Defend their territory with a singing ritual that starts at about 9 am each day and lasts for an hour




Defend their territory with a singing ritual that starts at about 9 am each day and lasts for an hour

Population 22,930
50% population decrease over the past 50 years

Siamang, the largest and most vocal of the gibbon species, are captivating primates that inhabit the dense rainforests of Southeast Asia, including Malaysia, Thailand, and Sumatra in Indonesia. Known for their distinctive and graceful arboreal locomotion, siamangs are adept at moving from tree to tree, highlighting their deep connection to the forest canopy.

These gibbons are easily recognized by their long, shaggy black fur, which covers their entire body except for a distinctive gray area around their chin and mouth. This unique feature, along with their sizeable throat pouch, which inflates during vocalizations, allows them to produce deep, resonating calls that can be heard for miles around. The social structure of siamang gibbons is centered around small, tight-knit family groups, typically comprising a monogamous pair and their offspring. Within these groups, grooming plays a significant role in reinforcing social bonds and hierarchies. Adults dedicate approximately 15 minutes daily to grooming activities, with the more dominant individual typically receiving more grooming than it provides.

However, the siamang’s existence is under threat from several human-induced factors. The primary challenges facing these gibbons are the loss and fragmentation of their forest habitats. Expanding road development cuts through the heart of their territories, disrupting their natural ranges and separating populations. Often illegal and unsustainable, logging operations decimate the trees essential for the siamang’s brachiation and shelter. Additionally, converting these rich biodiverse forests into agricultural land further erodes their living spaces, leaving them with increasingly smaller fragments of suitable habitat.

The illegal pet trade poses another grave threat to siamang gibbons, particularly targeting infants. Poachers often kill the protective mothers to snatch the infants, leading to a tragic loss of life and disrupting the social structure of siamang groups. The allure of owning an exotic pet drives this illicit trade, but it fails to consider the complex needs and natural behaviors of these wild animals, often resulting in suffering and premature death for the captured gibbons.


Population est.
Peninsular Malaysia

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd / Group

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No