Wildlife experts in southern China have found at least 17 gibbons, listed as one of the world's most endangered animals, a zoologist said on Wednesday.
The eastern black-crested gibbons were photographed in the Bangliang forest in the Guangxi region, 300 metres from China's border with Vietnam, said Guangxi University zoologist Zhou Fang.
"There are more than 30 in Vietnam and now we have found 17 [gibbons] in China," Zhou told Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA) from Guangxi.
Zhou's group reported the first sightings inside China since the 1950s, when the species was declared extinct on the Chinese mainland.
Zhou said some of the eastern black-crested gibbons appear to cross back and forth between China and Vietnam, meaning that some animals could have been double counted in 2002 and 2006.