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Tag archives for orangutans

National Geographic Emerging Explorer Hotlin Ompusunggu: Using Dentistry to Stop Deforestation

Dentist and conservationist Hotlin Ompusunggu combines conservation and healthcare through community-based projects, with a mission to break the cycle between poverty and illegal logging in Indonesia. Her innovative approach is having an impact, for the better, on both people and the natural world, which is why she has been recognized as a National Geographic Emerging Explorer.

Hotlin is the Co-Founder of Alam Sehat Lestari (ASRI), a nongovernmental organization in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. ASRI improves conservation and health outcomes through healthcare and community-based projects.

Her passion lies at the intersection of human and environmental health. She believes that “not only can we have healthy people and a healthy environment, but the two are fundamentally interlinked. We cannot separate one from the other.” Hotlin is hopeful that the success of ASRI can serve as a model to other endangered communities and environments worldwide.

Urgent Global Action Needed to Stop Extinction of Earth’s Last Megafauna

A swift and global conservation response is needed to prevent the world’s gorillas, lions, tigers, rhinos, and other iconic terrestrial megafauna from being lost forever, an influential group of international scientists reported today in the journal BioScience.

Their analysis, entitled Saving the World’s Terrestrial Megafauna, covers the precipitous loss of large animal populations around the globe. The report included a 13-point declaration by 43 scientists and conservationists calling for acknowledgement that a “business as usual” mentality will result in massive species extinction. Read the declaration and study the maps showing the global decline of big land animals.

Chasing Orangutans Into an Unknown Frontier

I’ll be entering into mysterious areas under the shadow of Mt. Gunung Palung, places where few have ventured into and where none have followed orangutans. I’ll be exploring the unknown.

Protecting Forests for Orangutans – Bringing Together a Historic Team of Forest Guardians in Borneo

By Dr. Herlina Hartanto, Director of the Indonesia Terrestrial Program, The Nature Conservancy A glimpse of red fur hanging on a tree branch caught my eye while cruising along the Kahayan River in Central Kalimantan (Central Kalimantan is in Indonesia, on the island of Borneo). The red fur coat turned out to be a young female…

Reflections on a Year of Following and Photographing Orangutans

Robert Rodriguez Suro spent a year living in the Bornean jungle, getting to know the local orangutans. Now he’s going back. Follow his story.

Chimps, Orangutans Have Human-Like Memory

Primates can quickly recall something learned three years before, suggesting that memories are not uniquely human, a new study says.

Hanging in the Rainforest Not as Fun as It Used to Be? It Might Be a Midlife Crisis.

When people begin to worry about their mortality, they might fight the blues by buying a fancy sports car, having an affair, or even getting a toupee. But, what is a great ape to do?

One-Time Illegal Logger Fights to Save the Forests of Borneo

Pak Bastarian was once an illegal logger, cutting trees in the forests of West Kalimantan, Borneo. Today he is a conservationist, leading his village of former headhunters in the fight to prevent oil palm plantations from clearing forest in his village.

Hunting a key factor in orangutan’s decline, study suggests

Humans entering the forests of Borneo 150 years ago were six times more likely to encounter wild orangutans than they would today, a new study finds. The researchers suspect that heavy hunting over the years is to blame. The finding means our understanding of the lives and behaviors of the great ape is based on…

Female orangutans evolve subtle response to forced sex

Female orangutans are forced to copulate against their will more frequently than has been observed in any other mammal. Scientists have generally believed that this is because females spurn mating with inferior “unflanged” males. Rejected males have no chance to mate unless they use coercion–or so it was thought. But new studies, using the first…

Zoo Animals Get Their Greens for Saint Patrick’s Day

Mandara, a 26-year-old female western lowland gorilla and her two-month old daughter, enjoyed the St. Patrick Day festivities. Mandara is eating a lime and honeydew melon kabob that she found in her goodie bag. The public can vote to name the baby gorilla on the Zoo’s Web site. Smithsonian’s National Zoo photo by Mehgan Murphy The…

Orangutan Clyde Is Ambassador for Great Ape Awareness

Clyde, a 315-pound orangutan, studies the oregano he found in his habitat yesterday at the San Diego Zoo. Herbs were scattered around his exhibit as part of enrichment activities to celebrate Great Ape Awareness Days at the zoo. Enrichment is the term used by zoos to refer to the creation of a stimulating environment that…