Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

A thin line between fact-checking and propaganda in Gaza social media coverage

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: How to Stop the Spiral? Israel Readies For Ground Offensive (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Gaza: How to Stop the Spiral? Israel Readies For Ground Offensive

Read more

FOCUS

Ireland's missing babies casting light on a dark history...

Read more

WEB NEWS

World Cup 2014: Germany-Brazil inspires the Web

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Boutros-Ghali: 'I wanted to reform the UN'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

57 000 little problems

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

The Sarkozy 'threat'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Budget challenge for India's new government

Read more

  • Hamas rockets reaching deeper into Israel

    Read more

  • French companies will have to accept anonymous CVs

    Read more

  • Ukrainian forces close in on Donetsk

    Read more

  • Germany asks US intelligence station chief to leave country

    Read more

  • Death toll rises in Gaza as militants target Israeli cities

    Read more

  • UN chief Ban Ki-moon appoints new Syria mediator

    Read more

  • Video: Muslims in China confront obstacles to Ramadan fasting

    Read more

  • Tour de France passes WWI Chemin des Dames battlefield

    Read more

  • Senegalese man awarded French visa in gay marriage debate

    Read more

  • Israel steps up airstrikes as diplomacy gets under way

    Read more

  • Argentina beat Netherlands on penalties to reach World Cup final

    Read more

  • Foiled French jihadist ‘targeted Louvre and Eiffel Tower’

    Read more

  • Obama in Texas to urge congressional action on child migrant crisis

    Read more

  • Iraq’s heritage 'in danger' from ISIS militants

    Read more

  • 100 years on, the Tour de France returns to the Western Front

    Read more

Newly-discovered orangutan 'nests' raise hope for species survival

©

Latest update : 2009-04-13

Up to 5,000 orangutans from an endangered species could be living in Borneo, scientists say, after the discovery of over 200 orangutan "nests" on the island. The news raises hope for the survival of what was thought to be a nearly extinct species.

AFP -  A previously unknown population of rare orangutans has been discovered in the forests of Indonesian Borneo, raising hopes for the species' survival, conservationists said Monday.

Up to 5,000 endangered Bornean orangutans are believed to be living in limestone mountains in East Kalimantan province after surveyors in December found 219 orangutan "nests", Nature Conservancy scientist Erik Meijaard told AFP.

The nests, sleeping platforms made of branches and leaves suspended in the trees, indicate there could be "several hundred to several thousand" orangutans living in the 2,500 square kilometre (965 square mile) area, Meijaard said.

Nardiyono, who headed the survey team by the US-based conservation group, said the discovery will aid efforts to conserve the apes.

"We are delighted with the new discovery. We consider this an important discovery as we have identified a new area where the orangutans can be found," he said.

"We are already working with the local government as well as (the) community to turn it into a protected area for the orangutans."

The orangutans probably fled into the area in East Kutai and Berau districts after massive forest fires hit Kalimantan in 1997 and 1998, said Nardiyono.

"We saw a family of three orangutans during the trip, the mother, her baby and a male. The male orangutan was angry with us and kept breaking branches and throwing them at us," he said.

Meijaard said the orangutans found in East Kalimantan belong to a subspecies, known as Pongo pygmaeus morio, known for its darker brown-black hair.

"Compared to other species, they are able to adapt better to difficult situations. They can survive in timber forests," Meijaard said, referring to forests denuded by loggers.

"They have strong jaws and can eat bark and leaves. They have smaller brains, we always joke that they are stupid."

There are an estimated 50,000 to 60,000 orangutans left in the wild, 80 percent of which live in Indonesia and 20 percent in Malaysia, according to The Nature Conservancy.

Date created : 2009-04-13

Comments

COMMENT(S)