Orangutans are huge Apes with a reddish hue. They are the only Great Apes found outside of Africa. Orangutans are classified into two subspecies, each named for the Indonesian island where they live: the Borean orangutans and Sumatran orangutans (they live in rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra respectively). Both species are classified as critically endangered due to hunting and habitat degradation.
1. Orangutans are also referred to as “Red Apes” because to their bright red coat.
2. Orangutans are a close relative of ours. They, like humans, have 32 teeth and their pregnancy lasts nine months.
3. They typically stand between 3.5 and 4.5 feet tall and weigh nearly 110 to 200 pounds.
4. Fruit accounts for 50% of their diet. Apart from that, orangutans enjoy eating leaves, bark, and insects. They are diurnal animals, meaning they are active throughout the daylight hours.
5. The orangutan is the world’s largest arboreal mammal (animals that spend most of their life in the trees). They may quickly migrate from one branch to the next. Additionally, they can spend considerable time gripping the branch with one arm while consuming fruit or foliage.
6. They dwell in the trees in order to avoid ground-based predators such as tigers and leopards.
7. When orangutans extend their arms, the distance between their left arm and right arm toes is around 7-8 feet, which is more than human height.
8. Orangutans are extremely intelligent creatures. They examine the depth of the water with equipment such as sticks before entering. When mosquitoes annoy them, they chase them away with branches. When it rains or the sun is too harsh, they cover their heads with enormous leaves.
9. They can communicate using a wide variety of noises (13-15)
10. Orangutans are loners. Males will always live alone, whilst females will either live alone or with their offspring. Males and females exclusively associate during mating season.
11. Male orangutans grow huge cheek pads around the age of 15, which attract females. These pads continue to expand throughout their lives.
12. Nine months of pregnancy result in the birth of a single baby. They are inextricably linked to their mothers and rely on them for nourishment and protection. Seven years are required for young orangutans to remain with their moms.
13. Orangutan infants cry when they are hungry and whimper when they are hurt. Infant orangutans are capable of smiling at their moms.
14. Orangutans breed at a snail’s pace. They produce only three offspring throughout their lifespan.
15. Orangutans can live up to 50 years in captivity and 35 years in the wild.