In the illegal pet trade, the only way for an orangutan baby to be caught is for the mother to be shot, and the baby pried from her dead body.
- They are found only in the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra.
- Both species are critically endangered. In the past 60 years the population has declined by 60% with a projection of 82% over 75 years.
- The name is derived from Malay and Indonesian words: orang meaning ‘person’ and hutan meaning ‘forest’. Orangutan, ‘person of the forest’.
- Their habitat under threat from:
- forest fires
- fragmentation by roads
- the conversion of tropical forests to palm oil plantations
- They risk:
- being killed to protect crops
- being hunted for traditional medicine
- being hunted with their bones secretly traded in some souvenir shops
- females being slaughtered so their babies can be sold as pets, many of which die without their mother’s help