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Assam’s Hollangapar Gibbon Sanctuary

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 Context:  The Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) plans to construct canopy bridges in Assam’s Hollangapar Gibbon Sanctuary to help India’s only ape, the hoolock gibbon, safely cross railway tracks dividing its habitat.

The sanctuary, home to about 125 gibbons, faces fragmentation due to a railway track. These bridges, designed by the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) and NFR, will facilitate the arboreal species’ movement. Safety measures, including nets, will be implemented to prevent accidents.


Key Facts about Hoolock Gibbon:

AboutGibbons, the smallest and fastest of all apes, inhabit tropical and subtropical forests in Southeast Asia. They have high intelligence, distinct personalities, and strong family bonds. They are one of the 20 gibbon species found worldwide.
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Population and HabitatThe current population of hoolock gibbons is around 12,000. They are found in Northeast India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, and Southern China.
Gibbon Species in IndiaTwo distinct species in India’s northeast: the eastern hoolock gibbon (Hoolock leuconedys) and the western hoolock gibbon (Hoolock hoolock).
ThreatsAll 20 gibbon species, including hoolock gibbons, are at high risk of extinction due to conservation challenges. Significant population and habitat decline due to deforestation for infrastructure projects in India.
Conservation StatusInternational Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List: Western Hoolock Gibbon: Endangered; Eastern Hoolock Gibbon: Vulnerable. Both species are listed on Schedule 1 of the Indian (Wildlife) Protection Act 1972.
 The Global Gibbon Network (GGN) recently convened its inaugural meeting in Haikou, China’s Hainan province, to address its critical situation. The GGN was initiated at the International Gibbon Day 2020 event, with representatives from 20 gibbon conservation organizations.
About Hollongapar Gibbon SanctuaryThe Hollongapar Gibbon Sanctuary, formerly known as the Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary or Hollongapar Reserved Forest, is an isolated evergreen forest in Assam, India. Established in 1997, the sanctuary was initially set aside in 1881, with its forests once extending to the Patkai mountain foothills. It is home to India’s only ape and gibbon species, the hoolock gibbons, and the Bengal slow loris, Northeastern India’s only nocturnal primate. The forest’s upper canopy is dominated by hollong trees, the middle by nahar trees, and the lower by evergreen shrubs and herbs.


Prelims Link:

Consider the following pairs: (UPSC 2010)

Protected areaWell-known for
1.Bhiterkanika, OrissaSalt Water Crocodile
2.Desert National Park, RajasthanGreat Indian Bustard
3.Eravikulam, KeralaHoolock Gibbon

Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?

(a) 1 only
(b) 1 and 2 only
(c) 2 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3


Source: TH