The Red Listed Hollock Gibbon in the Brahmaputra Valley

Authors: GAJENDRA MOHAN DEV SARMA*, RAHA COLLEGE
Topics: Biogeography
Keywords: Keywords : western hollock gibbon, hoolock hoolock, Hollongapar gibbon sanctuary, Brahmaputra valley, IUCN red list.
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/4/2019
Start / End Time: 1:10 PM / 2:50 PM
Room: Cleveland 1, Marriott, Mezzanine Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The only ape species in India is the Hollock gibbon. They are the three primate species of genus Hoolock in the gibbon family, Hylobatidae, viz. the eastern Hollock gibbons (Hoolock leuconedys), the western Hollock gibbons (Hoolock hoolock) and the skywalker Hollock gibbons (Hoolock tianxing), native to eastern Bangladesh, northeast India, Myanmar, and southwest China. Hollongapar, a gibbon sanctuary in the upper south Brahmaputra valley covering an area of 20.98 sq.km., is the abode of about 106 western Holock gibbons, locally known as ‘Holou Bandar’, distributed into 26 families. The sanctuary is a home of evergreen forest named after the tree species Hollong (Dipterocarpus macrocarpus) dominating in the upper canopy. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red listed Hoolock hoolock in 2000 as an endangered species and assessed in 2008 as a threatened species. The author undertook a field visit to the sanctuary and conducted interviews through a specifically designed question schedule and identified numerous threats to the survival of the gibbon species, viz. hunting, habitat loss as a consequence of illegal logging, and tea gardening. Another striking threat was the detachment of a number of males and females from their respective pairs as a result of dissection of one sector of the sanctuary into two halves due to construction of railways. As the Hollock gibbons are monogamous, the detachment led to a decline in their population.

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