Live Sounds: The Unearthly Call Of The Yellow-Cheeked Gibbon

This endangered primate's voice echoes like a siren through the forests. | By NGT Staff  
yellow-cheeked gibbon
Yellow-cheeked gibbons are an endangered species. Photo: Derek Keats/Flickr/Creative Commons (

You’re unlikely to forget the call of the yellow-cheeked gibbon once you’ve heard it. This mammal, found in the dense jungles of south and southeast Asia, produces a sound that can be heard for miles through the forests. It is listed as “endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as it is hunted for the pet trade.

Gibbons, in general, are characterised by long, powerful arms to grasp branches as they swing through the trees. Thanks to the way that they move, a motion called brachiation, gibbons can reach speeds of 56kmph. According to the WWF, yellow-cheeked gibbons are found in “northeastern Cambodia, southern Vietnam, and southern Laos, with Cambodia probably containing the majority of these individuals”. These animals can grow upto 80cm in length and weigh upto 7.4kg.

Listen to the haunting call of the yellow-cheeked gibbon below, recorded by Adrian Stoeger in northern Cambodia:

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