The Borneo Gibbon Rehabilitation Project or Borneo GReP is our second rehabilitation centre and the first gibbon rehabilitation project in Sabah.

Borneo GReP focuses on rehabilitating two endangered species of gibbons – the North Bornean Gibbon (Hylobates funereus) and the Abott’s Gray Gibbon (Hylobates abbotti). Both species are categorised as endangered under the IUCN Red List and are native to Sabah and Sarawak. 

Operations have begun!

On the 17th of January 2023, 5 North Bornean Gibbons arrived from the Sabah Wildlife Department to Borneo GReP. Most of these gibbons are former pets. Over the next few weeks, the Borneo GReP team will gather data on each individual to assess their psychological state and needs, in order to create a rehabilitation plan for each of them. Rehabilitation takes many years depending on each individual’s experienced trauma and ability to relearn their natural behaviours. We hope that all 5 gibbons will be able to be released one day.

We are grateful to have the support of Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Environment Sabah, the Sabah Wildlife Department, YB Datuk Ewon Benedick, Nepada Wildlife, Gompito and the community of Kampung Kiau, Kota Belud. 

View our press statement here

How it started...

In early 2020, German veterinarian and author, Hannah Emde from Nepada Wildlife was among a team of vets who found an infant North Bornean Gibbon alone in the Tawau Hill Park, Sabah. The infant, later named Noir, was no more than 2 months old and was lying on the ground screaming. How Noir got there, no one knows. Knowing the two gibbon families in the park, Hannah and the others resolved to wait until evening for the parents to return. But as it grew dark, they knew there was no chance of finding Noir’s family that same day. They then had to keep him warm, fed and ultimately alive – as baby gibbons are fragile. As Hannah cared for him and tried to find his family, she found us and got in touch with Mariani Ramli (Bam). Noir, being of a species native to borneo could not be brought over to GReP in Pahang, and so the ideas for the Borneo Gibbon Rehabilitation Project was born. 

Noir’s story is one that’s rare. Gibbons, who live in close, loving family units like humans, would never just abandon their baby. However, there are many others displaced by deforestation or victimised by the illegal pet trade, who like Noir, need help and a hopeful future. Borneo GReP will give them a second life and a chance to return to their forest homes.

Get Involved

Be a part of the first gibbon rehabilitation centre in Sabah and help save the Singing Apes of Malaysia. Support our second rehabilitation centre by donating or partnering with us. We’re looking for corporate partners, collaborators, volunteers and more. Find out how you can support us by sending an email to

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