Gibbons are intelligent and social animals. The vocal element, which can often be heard for distances up to 1 km (0.6 mi), consists of a duet between a mated pair, with their young sometimes joining in. The non-human types of apes are divided into two groups: great apes — gorillas, bonobos, chimpanzees and orangutans — and lesser apes — gibbons and siamangs. Their ball-and-socket wrist joints allow them unmatched speed and accuracy when swinging through trees. Gibbons are small apes comprising 20 species, all of which are endemic to South and Southeast Asia. IUCN Species Survival Commission Primate Specialist Group, "Gibbon Conservation Center Working to Save South Asia's Hoolock Gibbons & Other "Small Apes, "Gibbon genome and the fast karyotype evolution of small apes", "Coalescent-Based Analyses of Genomic Sequence Data Provide a Robust Resolution of Phylogenetic Relationships among Major Groups of Gibbons", "Gibbon systematics and species identification", "Gibbon Systematics and Species Identification", "Extinct gibbon found in tomb of ancient Chinese emperor's grandmother", "New species of gibbon discovered in China", "A stray molar is the oldest known fossil from an ancient gibbon - Ancestors of these small-bodied apes were in India roughly 13 million years ago, a study suggests", "New Middle Miocene ape (Primates: Hylobatidae) from Ramnagar, India fills major gaps in the hominoid fossil record", "The Syntax and Meaning of Wild Gibbon Songs", Recognizing gibbons from their regional accents, "A high-resolution map of synteny disruptions in gibbon and human genomes", "Functional anatomy of the gibbon forelimb: Adaptations to a brachiating lifestyle", https://www.reuters.com/article/us-science-gibbons-idUSKBN0H520320140910, "Comprehensive analyses of white-handed gibbon chromosomes enables access to 92 evolutionary conserved breakpoints compared to the human genome", http://www.kalaweit.org/sites-kalaweit-sumatra.php, "Letter of Endorsement - Year of the Gibbon", "Gibbon paintings in China, Japan, and Korea: Historical distribution, production rate and context", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Gibbon&oldid=992884097, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License. Living in small family groups, gibbons are mostly monogamous. Gibbons are apes in the family Hylobatidae (/ˌhaɪləˈbætɪdiː/). Apes are human’s closest living relatives. They have lighter bodies and smaller social groups than great apes. There are four types of apes like Gorillas, Orang-Utas, Chimpanzees and Gibbons. In most species, males and some females sing solos to attract mates, as well as advertise their territories. Gibbons do not have visible, external tails. The other is COL1A1, which is responsible for the development of collagen, a protein that is directly involved with the forming of connective tissues as well as bone and cartilage development. In the concolor group, which is classified in the genus Nomascus, both sexes are black as juveniles, but the females lighten to buff with maturity, so that the two sexes look quite different as adults. E. J. Brill, Leiden, Holland. In modern usage, however, yuán is a generic word for ape. Omissions? They are smaller than Apes and they don’t have the size differences.  The song can be used to identify not only which species of gibbon is singing, but also the area from which it comes. "My Dad's a scientist and he taught me about evolution and that started to really get me fascinated with great apes," she said. There are two extant branches of the superfamily Hominoidea: the gibbons, or lesser apes; and the hominids, or great apes. They also differ from great apes in having longer arms, dense hair, and a throat sac used for amplifying sound. Planet of the apes: Gibbons are last ape to have genome revealed. They live in forests, and are able to swing from tree to tree at incredible speeds.
They have a body that is designed for speed and movement. This greatly reduces the amount of energy needed in the upper arm and torso, while also reducing stress on the shoulder joint. The current conservation status of gibbon species is alarming - all but one is listed as either Endangered or Critically Endangered. They are strongly territorial, and defend their boundaries with vigorous visual and vocal displays. Most gibbons are about 16 to 26 inches (40 to 65 centimeters) long. Great apes, for example, are able to recognize themselves in mirrors (monkeys and other nonhumans cannot, with the exception of bottlenose dolphins). "The gibbon in China. The classification of the great apes has been revised several times in the last few decades; these revisions have led to a varied use of the word "hominid" over time. The dental formula is 126.96.36.199.1.2.3  The siamang, which is the largest of the 18 species, is distinguished by having two fingers on each foot stuck together, hence the generic and species names Symphalangus and syndactylus. Reuters. Gibbons are small apes..  They are the fastest and most agile of all tree-dwelling, nonflying mammals.. They are sometimes hunted for food, but more often they are killed for their supposed medicinal properties; their long arm bones are especially prized. The family historically contained one genus, but now is split into four extant genera and 18 species. The male has a prominent tassel of hair on the front of the lower abdomen. The animals are best known for their loud, penetrating calls and their ability to swing athletically from one tree branch to another. People more often confuse apes with monkeys but they are totally two different species. Gibbons are arboreal and move from branch to branch with speed and great agility by swinging from their arms (brachiating). The difference in colour comes about with age; the juveniles are buff and both sexes darken with age, but the male does so much more rapidly. Phylogenet. Their fur is usually black, gray, or brownish, often with white markings on hands, feet, and face. The family historically contained one genus, but now is split into four extant genera and 18 species. The most characteristic vocalization is the “great call,” usually a duet in which the female leads and the male joins in with less-complex notes, used as a territorial marker by both sexes. The family Hylobatidae, the lesser apes, include four genera and a total of sixteen species of gibbon, including the lar gibbon and the siamang, all native to Asia.  An extinct sixth genus, Junzi, was identified in 2018 based on a partial skull found in China. ScienceDaily. With a genome that has a 96% similarity to humans, the gibbon has a role as a bridge between Old World Monkeys like macaques and the great apes. They are highly arboreal and bipedal on the ground. Gibbons' diets are about 60% fruit-based, but they also consume twigs, leaves, insects, flowers, and occasionally bird eggs. Also called the lesser apes or small apes, gibbons differ from great apes (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, orangutans and humans) in being smaller, exhibiting low sexual dimorphism, and not making nests.  Gibbons, however, not only seemed to be free from problems but let the change help them effectively adapt to their environment. Molecular data indicate that the four groups are as different from one another as chimpanzees are from humans. Adult males are black and females are brown, with colour changes similar to those seen in the concolor group. , Gibbons often retain the same mate for life, although they do not always remain sexually monogamous. Some of the more pronounced differences include having longer arms, dense hair, and a throat sac used for amplifying sound. The common ancestor of hominoids is shown to have a minimum of 24 major chromosomal rearrangements from the presumed gibbon ancestor’s karyotype. The large and entirely black siamang is found alongside white- and dark-handed gibbons on the Malay Peninsula and Sumatra. These very acrobatic primates live in southeast Asia. Gibbons live in subtropical and tropical rainforest from eastern Bangladesh to Northeast India to southern China and Indonesia (including the islands of Sumatra, Borneo, and Java). Adding up, this implies that at least 52 major chromosomal rearrangements are needed to compare the common hominoid ancestor to today’s gibbons. The unusually high number of structural changes in the DNA and chromosomal rearrangements could lead to problematic consequences in some species. The pileated gibbon (H. pileatus), of southeastern Thailand and western Cambodia, has white hands and feet; the male is black and the female buff with a black cap and chest patch. Gibbons are rare, small, slender, long-armed, tree-dwelling apes. Western Hoolock gibbons, also known as white-browed gibbons, are the only apes that live in the Indian sub-continent. They feed mainly on fruit, with varying proportions of leaves and with some insects and bird eggs as well as young birds. (that is, the orangutans, gorillas, and chimpanzees) all being placed in a separate family, the Pongidae.  Adaptive divergence associated with chromosomal rearrangements led to rapid radiation of the four genera 5-7 Mya. … The original meaning of the term referred to only humans and their closest relatives—what is now the modern meaning of the term "hominin". You may hear them called the Lesser Apes at times too. They are the fastest and most agile of all tree-dwelling, nonflying mammals.. Early Chinese writers viewed the "noble" gibbons, gracefully moving high in the treetops, as the "gentlemen" (jūnzǐ, 君子) of the forest, in contrast to the greedy macaques, attracted by human food.  There is an extinct fifth genus named Bunopithecus which is either a gibbon or gibbon-like ape. The lars, a group of species classified in the genus Hylobates, are the smallest and have the densest body hair. Gibbons are small, slender, long-armed, tree-dwelling apes. The males have an upstanding tuft of hair on top of the head and a small inflatable throat sac. ", Gibbons are among nature's best brachiators.The lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox visual and vocal displays found. Gibbons occasionally `` divorce have suggestions to improve this article ( requires login ) and! `` [ 24 ] [ 25 ], like all primates, gibbons often retain the mate... Booming call social animals the Indo-Malayan region, extending from India and China, through. 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