As mentioned on monday, doing a couple of -reruns for this week. This chunk was one of my favs to write as it was about what could be considered to be my favourite animal, the Orangutan
Campaign Chunk Volume 12.05 – Orangutan
The Orangutan, sometimes spelled as orang-utan, orangutang, or even orang-utang, is a great ape native to Indonesia and Malaysia. They have a fur that seems to be a mixture of orange red and brown. The Sumatran Orangutan is smaller and has longer hair when compared to the Bornean Orangutan. Their name comes from the Malay word for a person – “Orang” and the hutan word for forest – “utan”, making their name Person of the Forest.
They are well known for their long arms , up to 8 ft. from fingertip to fingertip in the case of very large males, and their hands with opposable thumbs make it easy for them to climb the trees of their habitats. This makes obtaining their diet of mostly eats fruit, leaves, and bark, but also insects, bird eggs and small vertebrate animals relatively easy for them. They also walk on their hands, or more correctly their knuckles, like a gorilla, or their palms. These agile hands are also useful for making their nests that they go to sleep in every night up in their trees.
Males are normally quite large when compared to females, they can be up to 1.5m tall and weigh as much as 120kg. Females are much smaller. They grow up to 1m tall and weigh about 45kg. Male orangutans grow a beard and moustache when they become adults, some male orangutans also grow cheek pads and throat pouches.
Orangutans have the longest birth interval of any mammal, typical only once every 8 years or so, with the females not starting to breed until they are typically around 17 years old. Most orangs live up to 35-40 years, so this may only give them 3 or 4 births in their lifetime. This low birth rate, combined with their shrinking habitat is why the orangutans may be the first Great Apes to become extinct. There are now less than 14,600 left in Sumatra, and less than 54,000 in Borneo.
Hooks & Rumours
- A sanctuary for suddenly received several million dollars as an anonymous donation. The media is in a frenzy trying to figure who this money came from so they an interview them and find out why this donation was made. Some are saying it was part of a will, with growing evidence suggesting that it was a group of people pooling their resources.
- With appearances in several films and being a popular character in a series of books, the popularity of the Orangutan is growing. As it does, the political pressure to preserve their diminishing habitat increases. A few extreme activists have begun targeting embassies and home of those connected to the areas the orangutans inhabit.
- When an eccentric millionaire died, it was discovered on his estate several groups of primates including chimpanzees and orangutans.
- A biologist was reported to the relevant authorities for trying to crossbreed an orangutan with a human. For the most part, they were successful but required a human female host. This is what ultimately led to their capture. Before they could be brought to trial they managed to escape and a large bounty has been placed on them.