Why We Should Protect Orangutan

baby orangutan theorangutannetworkOrangutan are endangered red apes that were once found throughout the Southeast Asia. Today, Orangutan survives in very small populations in different patches of forest located in Islands of Sumatra and Borneo. The red apes comprise of three species namely Tapanuli orangutan, Sumatran orangutan and Bornean orangutan.

Tapanuli Orangutan

This is the newest species in the family of orangutan that was recently announced by a team of international scientists. Tapanuli orangutan are found in the North Sumatra. It’s believe that the population of Tapanuli is about 800 or less making them the rarest species in the family of great apes. Tapanuli orangutan are distinguished from others based on genomic and morphological evidence. These apes were first discovered in 1997 when orangutan survey was carried out in the region. A research center was established in 2006 to study the behavior of orangutans and genetics. A breakthrough was realized in 2013 when a group of researchers discovered the male skull of Tapanuli male was examined and showed that it was different from other orangutans.

The discovery of Tapanuli was the greatest news in the 21st century. Like other orangutan apes, Tapanuli apes are seriously under threat of extinction if measures are not taken to save it. The biggest threat is the human encroachment especially from mining and proposed hydroelectric dam. Hunting is another serious factor that put Tapanuli in the verge extinction. That means steps must be taken quickly to avert these threats and conserve the last portion of the remaining forest.

Sumatran Orangutan

The estimated population of Sumantran is about 7,500 and that’s why its also categorized as endangered species. If we go by the population estimate given, they we can say that soon this species will extinct in the wild during our time. The largest ape in Asia is said to share 97% of the DNA with humans making it the closest human relative. Ironically, the biggest threat come humans.

Fondly referred to as Red Apes, Sumatran are normally long and red-orange haired with an average weight of between 30 and 82 kg. Nowadays they’re found two places, which are Sumatra and Borneo. The life span these apes is typically between 30 years and 40 years.

Bornean Orangutan

The Bornean Orangutan is a large ape that is commonly found in Borneo forest. It is said to be the 3rd heaviest ape after the other two in the family of gorilla. Male Bornean can weigh an average of between 50 and 100 kg while female range between 30kg and 50 kg. Males also have large cheek pads that are largely composed of muscles and fat deposits. Female cheeks are slightly smaller and flanges are usually composed of muscles.

Saving Orangatun

Orangutan Cincinnati Zoo orangutannetworkYou can support by contributing towards support the work of saving the endangered Orangutans. Your care and compassion towards conserving the Orangutan apes is definitely invaluable and will go along way in ensuring that these three species of orangutans continue being with us in the future. Most of the income come is different forms such as fundraising, donation or adoptions. Every single donation is making a huge difference in this life-saving work. Most of these funds are used in rescuing, rehabilitating, releasing the orphaned apes and research work.