Protection of the southern white-cheeked gibbon

Male southern white-cheeked gibbon Photo: @Tilo Nadler

Project title: Advancing protection of the southern white-cheeked gibbon (Nomaskis siki) in Southern Lao PDR 

Location: Phou Hin Poun National Protected Area in Khammouane Province, Lao PDR

Duration: 2014 – 2019

Project background: Lao PDR has a relatively large population and high diversity of gibbons, second only to Indonesia, with six different species. The country is home to the highly threatened genus of crested gibbons, Nomascus. Among those found in Lao PDR, the western black crested gibbon (Nomascus concolor) is classified as Critically Endangered in the IUCN Redlist of Threatened SpeciesTM and the southern and northern white-cheeked gibbons (Nomascus siki and Nomascus leucogenys) are classified as Endangered and Critically Endangered, respectively. Little information is available about southern white-cheeked gibbon populations, habitat and distribution.

To increase local and global knowledge of this primate, IUCN is working with the Government of Lao PDR and local communities to protect the primate in the Phou Hin Poun National Protected Area (NPA). To date, significant progress has been made in developing community-based conservation at this site for its important biodiversity values, of which gibbons are a flagship species.

Objectives of the project:

  • Support the Government of Lao PDR, through technical advice and facilitation, to produce a National Conservation Action Plan for gibbons in collaboration with key stakeholders and experts
  • Utilise the action planning process to improve knowledge of core gibbon populations and their conservation needs in Lao PDR
  • Raise awareness about the urgent need to better conserve gibbons in the country and to bring greater focus, coordination and commitment to support and fund gibbon conservation in the long-term

Expected output:

  • National Gibbon Conservation Action Plan

Donor: Arcus Foundation

Partners: Fauna & Flora International (FFI) Vietnam; Provincial of Natural Resources and Environment Department (PONRE); and Provincial Agriculture and Forestry Office (PAFO) in Khammoune province

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