In News

    • Recently, four police personnel in Chennai were suspended for aiding orangutan smugglers.

    About Orangutans

    • About:
      • Orangutans are great apes native to the rainforests of Indonesia and Malaysia. They are now found only in parts of Borneo and Sumatra.
    • Habitat:
      • The name orangutan means “man of the forest” in the Malay language
      • The most arboreal of the great apes, orangutans spend most of their time in trees. 
    • Characteristics:
      • They have proportionally long arms and short legs, and have reddish-brown hair covering their bodies. 
      • Bornean and Sumatran orangutans differ a little in appearance and behavior
        • While both have shaggy reddish fur, Sumatran orangutans have longer facial hair.
    • Threats:
      • Human activities have caused severe declines in populations and ranges. 
      • Threats to wild orangutan populations include poaching (for bushmeat and retaliation for consuming crops), habitat destruction and deforestation (for palm oil cultivation and logging), and the illegal pet trade.
    • Declining population & IUCN Status:
      • A century ago there were probably more than 230,000 orangutans in total, but
        • The Bornean orangutan is now estimated at about 104,700 based on updated geographic range categorized as Endangered and 
        • The Sumatran about 7,500 which are categorized as Critically Endangered.
        • Tapanuli orangutan: A third species of orangutan was announced in November, 2017. With no more than 800 individuals in existence, the Tapanuli orangutan is the most endangered of all great apes.

    Source: TH