Newborn White-Cheeked Gibbon

A newborn white-cheeked gibbon clings to its mother in the Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago, Illinois. The White-Cheeked Gibbon's natural habitat is Southern China as well as Vietnam and Laos. They are classified as highly endangered and are on the brink of extinction due to poaching and reduction of natural rainforests.

Nomascus is the second most speciose genus of gibbons (family Hylobatidae). Originally this genus was a subgenus of Hylobates, and all individuals were considered one species, Hylobates concolor. Species within Nomascus are characterized by 52 chromosomes.

Some species are all black, some light with a distinct black tuft of crown fur, and some by distinct, light-colored cheek patches. Nomascus is found from southern China (Yunnan) to southern Vietnam, and also on Hainan Island. One of the genus' species, Nomascus nasutus, has been deemed “the most critically endangered ape species in the world.