Picture of a super cute orphaned baby orangutan goes viral

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These adorable images were captured by the photographer Jami Tarris who hopes that they will increase awareness about the current situation of the orangutan. She is a wildlife photographer who travelled to Sumatra to spend time with the orangutans.


Two days before the photographer arrived on the Island, the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Program rescued three young orangutans that had been captured by two men intending to sell them as pets.

The animals are not only targeted by poachers. The forests where orangutans live are disappearing at an alarming rate due to the rapid growth of the palm oil industry .

“It is a tragedy, and this story needs to reach all households so that we stop the demand for a product (palm oil*) that is rapidly destroying the home of the orangutan and many other animals,” Tarris said in an interview with The Mirror. “We have a moral obligation to save as many species as we can; orangutans have just as much right to be here as we do.”

Estimates suggest that Sumatran orangutan numbers have doubled

The island of Sumatra is home to the Sumatran orangutans—one of two existing species of orangutans. The apes, which are threatened by poaching and forest loss, cannot be found anywhere else, and many specialists consider them endangered.

In 2008, the remaining number of orangutans was estimated at 6,600—a number that had dropped 80% over the preceding 80 years.

Orangutan

A few days ago, an international team of researchers published the results of an extended surveys that gave back a bit of hope to the international community. They found that about 14,600 of these animals were still living in Indonesia—double what had been previously thought. However, this may only be great news in appearance because it is believed that this increase in numbers is due to the wider research area covered by the scientists’ team rather than an actual increase in the number of living orangutans. The researchers surveyed areas 1,500m above sea level, where it had been previously assumed that orangutans couldn’t live. Surprisingly, they also found orangutans repopulating areas that had previously been logged.

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