Orangutans : The Red Apes

orangutans.jpgOrang = man

hutan = forest
Orangutan = man of the forest

The word orangutan translates literally as "man of the forest," from the Malay and Indonesian words orang and hutan. Orangutans, sometimes called "red apes," are highly intelligent primates with advanced reasoning and thinking skills. They are tool-using creatures — they poke branches into termite holes, use chewed-up leaves as sponges to soak up water, and use branches or sticks to test the depth of the water before entering it.

Though large, orangutans are usually gentle, and spend most of their lives up in trees, where they’re safe from predators. They bear amazing similarities to humans: baby orangutans cry, whimper, and smile just like human babies, and their facial expressions indicate happiness, fear, anger, surprise, and other emotions. Orangutans and humans share approximately 97 percent the same DNA. Baby orangutans are cared for by their mothers longer than other mammals except humans.

Orangutans typically have long, shaggy reddish brown hair and a heavy body. They have long, strong arms well-suited for life in the trees, and hand-life feet, which aid in their climbing.

In ancient times, orangutans ranged throughout most of Asia. But today, as a result of human encroachment on their jungles, orangutan populations are found only in Borneo and Sumatra, the only areas with large enough forests to sustain a breeding population of these intelligent, gentle creatures.

The precise population of remainining orangutans is unknown, but experts estimate that the number of orangs in Sumatra is about half of what it was in 1993.
Orangutan Facts

* Size of Orangutans:
Males: about 4 1/2 feet tall and 200 to 250 lbs.
Females: About 3 1/2 feet tall and 100-150 lbs.
* Orangutan Lifespan:
Orangutans live to about 35 to 40 years of age in the wild, and into their 50s in captivity.
* Orangutan Babies:
Female orangutans bear one baby at a time, like humans, about every 6 to 7 years. The female reaches sexual maturity at around 7 years, and can remain fertile for up to 30 years.
* Social Culture:
Adult female orangutans live with their young, while adult males live alone.
* Diet:
Orangutan diets consist largely of fruits and nuts, coarse vegetation, insects, small vertebrates, tree bark, and eggs.

quoted from : http://www.orangutanisland.org/orangutans/

supported by : JavaTourism, Lintang Buana Tours

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