Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Biology and behaviour of reintroduced gibbons

Published source details

Cheyne S.M., Chivers D.J. & Sugardjito J. (2008) Biology and behaviour of reintroduced gibbons. Biodiversity and Conservation, 17, 1741–1751


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Rehabilitate injured/orphaned primates Primate Conservation

A controlled study in 2002-2003 in a swamp forest in Mintin Island, Borneo, Indonesia found that wild-born, captive-raised Bornean agile gibbons Hylobates albibarbis that were rehabilitated before release into the wild along with other interventions, shared a similar diet, spent similar amounts of time feeding, resting, and arm-swinging and at similar canopy heights as wild gibbons. However, the latter spent more time singing, socializing and travelling. Gibbons were quarantined for at least 12 months before reintroduction, during which they underwent veterinary screens. They were kept in in enclosures (3 x 3 x 3 m) and were supplemented with vitamins and leaves once a week. Individuals were introduced in pairs and into habitat in which wild gibbons were present. Only one reintroduced pair of gibbons was compared to a pair of wild gibbons at another site. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Reintroduce primates as single/multiple individuals Primate Conservation

A controlled study in 2002-2003 in lowland forest in Kalimantan, Indonesia found that wild-born, captive-raised Bornean agile gibbons Hylobates albibarbis that were reintroduced in pairs, along with other interventions, shared a similar diet, spent similar amounts of time feeding, resting, and arm-swinging and at similar canopy heights as wild gibbons. However, wild gibbons spent more time singing, socializing and travelling. Before reintroduction gibbons were quarantined at a holding facility for at least one year, where they were screened by vets. They were kept in enclosures (3 x 3 x 3 m) to socialize and acclimatize to the natural environment and, during this time, were supplemented with vitamins and leaves once a week. Comparisons were made between a reintroduced pair of gibbons and a pair of wild gibbons at another site. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Allow primates to adapt to local habitat conditions for some time before introduction to the wild Primate Conservation

A controlled study in 2002-2003 in swamp forest in Mintin Island, Borneo, Indonesia found that a wild-born, captive-raised Bornean agile gibbon Hylobates albibarbis pair that was allowed to adapt to local habitat conditions before reintroduction along with other interventions, shared a similar diet, spent similar amounts of time feeding, resting, and arm-swinging and at similar canopy heights as wild gibbons. However, the latter spent more time singing and socializing and travelling, probably because the reintroduced gibbon pair split up almost immediately after their release. The two gibbons were quarantined for at least 12 months before reintroduction and underwent veterinary screens. They were kept in enclosures (3 x 3 x 3 m) to socialize and acclimatize and during this time, were supplemented with vitamins and leaves once a week. They were introduced as a pair and into habitat with resident wild gibbons. The behaviour of the reintroduced gibbon pair was compared to a pair of wild gibbons at another site. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Conduct veterinary screens of animals before reintroducing/translocating them Primate Conservation

A controlled study in 2002-2003 in swamp forest on Mintin Island, Borneo, Indonesia found that wild-born, captive-raised Bornean agile gibbons Hylobates albibarbis that underwent veterinary screens before reintroduction alongside other interventions, shared a similar diet, spent similar amounts of time feeding, resting, and arm-swinging and at similar canopy heights as wild gibbons. However, wild gibbons spent more time singing and socializing and travelling, which can be explained by the fact that the reintroduced gibbon pair split up almost immediately after their release. Gibbons were quarantined for at least 12 months before reintroduction. They were kept in enclosures (3 x 3 x 3 m) to socialize and acclimatize to the natural environment and were supplemented with vitamins and leaves once a week. They were introduced in pairs and into habitat in which wild gibbons were present. Only one reintroduced pair of gibbons was compared to a pair of wild gibbons at another site. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.

Reintroduce primates into habitat where the species is present Primate Conservation

A controlled study in 2002–2003 in lowland freshwater swamp forest in Borneo, Indonesia found that wild-born, captive-raised Bornean agile gibbons Hylobates albibarbis reintroduced into habitat in which wild gibbons were present along with other interventions, shared a similar diet, spent similar amounts of time feeding, resting, and arm-swinging and at similar canopy heights as wild gibbons. However, wild gibbons spent more time singing, socializing, and travelling. Before reintroduction, gibbons were quarantined in enclosures (3 x 3 x 3 m) for at least 12 months, were screened by vets were allowed to socialize and acclimatize to the natural environment, and were supplemented with vitamins and leaves once a week. Only one reintroduced pair of gibbons was compared to a pair of wild gibbons at another site. The study does not distinguish between the effects of the different interventions mentioned above.