Tuesday, October 19, 2010


The Orangutan is on the verge of extinction. As part of a complex ecosystem of which the species forms an integral part, we cannot let the Orangutan become extinct in the wild. Its habitat is being destroyed by a global demand for wood and palm oil, two products which touch each of our lives.
The situation in Nyaru Menteng has become very desperate. We are faced with the task of finding approximately $1.5 million annually to keep the project running. If we fail to achieve this, the government, who owns all the land, facilities and the orangutans themselves, could take over. If this happens, it is likely most orangutans will be euthanised, and a few left to bring in tourists. Rescues and confiscations will cease, as the Indonesian government would not want to admit there is a problem. The recent fires which reached unanticipated levels of destruction have only made matters worse. Already many more orangutans have been rescued, and in the months to come, as a result of a severely diminished habitat, many more orangutans will be flushed out of the small pockets of forest and need rescuing. It is hard to anticipate accurately what impact this will have on the Nyaru Menteng project.
We are therefore grateful for any amount of assistance we may get, big or small, so that we may continue this important work, and not be faced with making the decision that we cannot afford to rescue any more orangutans.


What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, men would die from great loneliness of spirit, for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to man. All things are connected. Whatever befalls the earth befalls the children of the earth.Chief Seattle
Of the nearly 250,000 flowering plants known, 170,000 or 68 percent occur in the tropics and subtropics, making tropical rainforests among the most diverse and complex living environments on Earth. Those of the Far East, including Borneo and Sumatra, may be some of the most complex of all. For a hint of the diversity, Borneo and Sumatra represent 1.3% of Indonesia’s landmass but they support 10% of its known plant species, 12.5% of its mammals, and 17% of its other vertebrates. Borneo alone has 10,000-15,000 species of flowering plants.
That is as rich as the whole of Africa, which is 40 times larger, and 10 times richer than the British Isles.
Each of these organisms is dependent on the whole ecosystem functioning – like a house of cards is dependent on all of its cards. If whole areas of forest are clear-cut, the whole system fails; habitats for thousands of species disappear, and are lost forever. Once the forest is gone, the tropical, acidic, and nutrient poor soils make it difficult for crops to prosper for more than a few years, eventually being replaced by weeds or coarse grasses such as alang-alang in Indonesia.
The value of biological diversity and the rainforest can only be estimated.
Every time an acre of rainforest is burned or chopped down, we might lose a cure for cancer or AIDS. Scientists have already seen it happen. A chemical that was a potential cure for AIDS was found in the bark of a gum tree in Malaysia (Sarawak). Scientists took a sample of the bark and studied it to see if it killed the AIDS virus. The results looked good, so the scientists returned to Malaysia to get more samples for further study. When they got there, the tree was gone, chopped down and made into plywood.


This makes them graceful and agile while climbing through the trees but it makes walking on the ground somewhat slow and awkward. That is why the orangutan is at a great disadvantage on the ground, and why the orangutan rarely comes down from the treetops. Their food is there, their home is there and they are safer there.
An orangutan’s lifespan is about 35-40 years in the wild, and sometimes into the 50’s in captivity. They reach puberty at about 8 years of age, but a female isn’t ready for her own baby until she’s in her teens.
The orangutan has the longest childhood dependence on the mother of any animal in the world, because there is so much for a young orangutan to learn in order to survive. The babies nurse until they are about six years of age. The young males may stay close by their mothers for a few more years but the females may stay until they are into their teens, allowing them to observe mothering skills as they watch their younger sibling being raised by the mother.
“Orangutan females only give birth about once every 6-11 years – the longest time between births of any mammal on earth. (This results in only 4 to 5 babies in her lifetime.) This is why orangutan populations are very slow to recover from disturbance.”
The male throat sac is used to make a very notable and recognizable call that echoes through the forest. This is called the BLong Call and is used to locate and advertise their presence to females or warn other males away.
Males often weigh over 200 pounds, where females are 1/3 to 1/2 his size.
The males generally remain solitary until they encounter a female who is receptive to mating. They will stay with the female for several days to ensure a successful mating but will soon resume their solitary life. Due to their large size, males will more often travel on the ground than females.
Food is often scarce in the rain forest and that is why the orangutan is a semi-solitary creature. In times of great abundance of food, orangutans may use the opportunity to socialize and gather in small groups.


Like the other great apes, orangutans are remarkably intelligent. Although tool use among chimpanzees was documented by Jane Goodall in the 1960s, it was not until the mid-1990s that one population of orangutans was found to use feeding tools regularly. For example, when water is difficult to get, they chew leaves to make a sponge to soak up water in tree cavities. When it rains very hard the orangutan makes an umbrella for himself out of big leaves.
Many people are familiar with the studies that have shown chimpanzees using tools, such as termite-fishing sticks. Recent studies show that some populations of orangutans also fashion tools to aid in the difficult task of foraging for food.
According to recent research by Harvard University psychologist, James Lee, orangutans are the world’s most intelligent animal other than man, with higher learning and problem solving ability than chimpanzees, which were previously considered to have greater abilities. A study of orangutans by Carel van Schaik, a Dutch primatologist at Duke University, found them capable of tasks well beyond chimpanzees abilities such as using leaves to make rain hats and leakproof roofs over their sleeping nests. He also found that, in some food-rich areas, the creatures had developed a complex culture in which adults would teach youngsters how to make tools and find food.
Although orangutans are generally passive, aggression toward other orangutans is very common and can be territorial. Immature males will try to mate with any female, and may succeed in forcibly copulating with her if she is also immature and not strong enough to fend him off. Mature females easily fend off their immature suitors, preferring to mate with a mature male.
Orangutans have even shown laughter-like vocalizations in response to physical contact, such as wrestling, play chasing, or tickling.


Orangutans are a species of great ape found only in South East Asia on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra, although evidence of their existence has been found in Java, Vietnam and China. The gentle red ape demonstrates significant intelligence, with an ability to reason and think and is one of our closest relatives, sharing 97% of the same DNA as humans. Indigenous peoples of Indonesia and Malaysia call this ape Orang Hutan literally translating into English as People of the Forest.
The name of the genus, Pongo, comes from a 16th century account by Andrew Battell, an English sailor held prisoner by the Portuguese in Angola, which describes two anthropoid “monsters” named Pongo and Engeco. It is now believed that he was describing gorillas, but in the late 18th century it was believed that all great apes were orangutans; hence Lacapade’s use of Pongo for the genus.
In times past they would not kill them because they felt the orangutan was simply a person hiding in the trees, trying to avoid having to go to work or become a slave.
Orangutans are unique in the ape world. There are four kinds of great apes: gorillas, chimpanzees, bonobos and orangutans. Only the orangutan comes from Asia; the others all come from Africa. There are two separate species of orangutan – the Sumatran orangutan (Pongo abelii) and the Bornean orangutan (Pongo pygmaeus) Orangutans are only found on the islands of Sumatra and Borneo.
The orangutan is the only strictly arboreal ape and is actually the largest tree living mammal in the world. The rest of the apes do climb and build sleeping nests in the trees, but are primarily terrestrial (spending their lives on the ground). Every night they fashion nests, in which they sleep, from branches and foliage. They are more solitary than the other apes, with males and females generally coming together only to mate. Even the hair color of the orangutan, a bright reddish brown, is unique in the ape world.


The Malay word orangutan means "person of the forest." These long-haired, orangish primates, found only in Sumatra and Borneo, are highly intelligent and are close relatives of humans.
Orangutans have an enormous arm span. A male may stretch his arms some 7 feet (2 meters) from fingertip to fingertip—a reach considerably longer than his standing height of about 5 feet (1.5 meters). When orangutans do stand, their hands nearly touch the ground.
Orangutans' arms are well suited to their lifestyle because they spend much of their time (some 90 percent) in the trees of their tropical rain forest home. They even sleep aloft in nests of leafy branches. They use large leaves as umbrellas and shelters to protect themselves from the common rains.
These cerebral primates forage for food during daylight hours. Most of their diet consists of fruit and leaves gathered from rain forest trees. They also eat bark, insects and, on rare occasions, meat.
Orangutans are more solitary than other apes. Males are loners. As they move through the forest they make plenty of rumbling, howling calls to ensure that they stay out of each other's way. The "long call" can be heard 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) away.
Mothers and their young, however, share a strong bond. Infants will stay with their mothers for some six or seven years until they develop the skills to survive on their own. Female orangutans give birth only once every eight years—the longest time period of any animal. The animals are long-lived and have survived as long as 60 years in captivity.
Because orangutans live in only a few places, and because they are so dependent upon trees, they are particularly susceptible to logging in these areas. Unfortunately, deforestation and other human activities, such as hunting, have placed the orangutan in danger of extinction.


Salam, kepada semua..

Simpan guli di atas peran,
Pusat sumber jadi sasaran.

Team Prihatin Orang Utan telah memilih pusat sumber sebagai tempat untuk dijadikan lokasi pameran agar warga sekolah boleh mengetahui dan mendapatkan info tentang haiwan yang kian pupus iaitu orang utan. Di sana, kami telah menyediakan sedikit sebanyak info dan buku phamplet. Selain itu, para pengunjung boleh menandatangani buku petisyen yang disediakan.

Pandangan penuh pameran di pusat sumber

Sebahagian daripada bahan kami

Disertakan juga buku petisyen


Turut prihatin

Menandatangani buku petisyen

Sokongan tanpa henti


23 September 2005 Laporan bertajuk "Oil for Ape Scandal oleh Pertubuhan Friend of the Earth mendedahkan :
1.    Tanpa campur tangan segera, perdagangan kelapa sawit boleh menyebabkan pupusnya spesies Orang Utan dalam masa 12 tahun.
2.    Hampir 90 peratus habitat Orang Utan di Indonesia dan Malaysia telah musnah.
3.    Beberapa orang pakar menganggarkan bahawa 5,000 Orang Utan pupus setiap tahun, kesan daripada keadaan itu.
4.    Terdapat kurang daripada 60,000 Orang Utan yang hidup secara liar di Borneo dan Sumatera.
5.    Pusat penyelamat Orang Utan di Indonesia "padat dengan bayi Orang Utan yang yatim piatu" yang diselamatkan dari hutan-hutan yang ditebangkan untuk perladangan kelapa sawit.
6.    Kerajaan Indonesia bercadang untuk mewujudkan sebuah ladang kelapa sawit terbesar dunia di Borneo, iaitu di sepanjang sempadan dengan Malaysia yang akan merentasi kawasan perlindungan orang utan.
7.    Menggesa kerajaan Indonesia dan Malaysia menerima dan melaksanakan Deklarasi Kinshasa yang diterbitkan oleh Pertubuhan Bangsa-bangsa Bersatu (PBB) 10 September 2005 dan menamatkan penukaran kawasan habitat Orang Utan  kepada ladang-ladang kelapa sawit. Kerajaan Indonesia telah menandatangani perjanjian itu tetapi kerajaan Malaysia belum menandatanganinya.


PEMAKANAN:- Orangutan ialah omnivor yang memakan daging dan tumbuh-tumbuhan tetapi biasanya mereka ialah herbivor yang memakan tumbuh-tumbuhan sahaja. Mereka makan buah-buahan(makanan kegemaran mereka), daun, dahan pokok dan pucuk daun yang segar. Mereka juga makan serangga kecil.

KEPANDAIAN:- Orangutan sangat cerdik. Mereka tahu menggunakan objek sekeliling mereka untuk alat. Contohnya mereka menggunakan daun besar untuk dijadikan payung untuk mengelakkan kebasahan. Mereka juga menggunakan daun sebagai cawan untuk membantu mereka minum.

KELAKUAN:- Orangutan pemalu dan suka bersendirian. Mereka hanya aktif pada siang hari. Mereka tinggal bersendirian di kawasan yang lebar. Hal ini demikian kerana mereka memerlukan kawasan yang lebar untuk mendapatkan makanan lebih. Jika terlalu banyak orangutan dalam satu kawasan mereka akan kebuluran.

TEMPAT TIDUR:- Setiap petang, orangutan membuat 'sarang' atas pokok untuk mereka tidur. Sarang mereka diperbuat daripada daun-daun dan ranting kayu. Sarang itu dikongsi oleh orangutan betina dan anak yang masih disusuinya. Mereka juga menggunakan daun untuk melindungi diri daripada kehujanan. Mereka biasanya tidur seketika pada waktu tengah hari selepas penat mencari makanan pada waktu pagi.
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