Orangutan, comes from the Malay words for orang, person, and hutan, forest. They are the forest ape and the only great ape found in Asia. There are two species - the Bornean and Sumatran. Today both face an uncertain future as agriculture, logging, mining and fires conttinue to destroy the forests upon which they depend.
Orangutan babies are born after an eight month pregnancy. This baby was 9 days old when we arrived. Mother Akamd will not leave it alone for the first 2 years of it's life, photograph along with older sibling Atlas, at Camp Leakey, Tanjung Puting National park, Kalimantan Indonesian Borneo.
Orangutans are the largest arboreal (tree living) animals in the world. They are entirely dependent upon trees for their existence and are perfectly adapted to life in the forest. Up to 60 per cent of an orangutan's life is spent foraging for food, mostly in the canopy, and 40 per cent sleeping and resting.
To date, palm oil plantations have represented the greatest threat to orangutan's habitat, because many estates have been established at the expense of primary rainforest. From the plantation owners' perspective it makes sense to clear forested land rather than to set up on degraded land because they can sell the timber before planting the palms. However, for orangutans and other species that depend on the forest for their survival, it is bad news.
One of the ways forward, is for responsible organisations to purchase forested land which they will be able to protect for future years, when the current infants that are in care can be released back into the forest.
The Orangutan Foundation International (OFI) have set themselves a goal to purchase a 640 000 acre piece of forest, near the Care Centre, called the Rawa Kuno Legacy forest in Pangkalanbun, Central Kalimantan.
local river boat - Klotok
Tanjung Puting National park
We also visit a local market, which has endless opportunites for images, with very willing subjects.
Photography workshops and weaving workshops with Jackie Peers in New Zealand