Poachers have killed mother orangutans so their young could be taken and sold.
But a new synthesis of existing evidence has shown that orangutans can, and do, inhabit in areas impacted by humans, and that may mean only good things for the survival of the species.
Orangutans are a critically endangered, formally protected species. Researchers estimate their current population is less than 1 percent of what it was before humans began encroaching on their habitat 70, years ago.
Dating back to the Pleistocene, they lived in populations ranging from the islands of Sumatra and Borneo all the way to China and Southeast Asia.
But beginning 20, years ago, their range shrank to just Sumatra and Borneo. The review published June 27 in the journal Science Advances combines the fields of paleontology, ecology, conservation, animal behavior, and genetics to examine how orangutan populations have been impacted by humans over the lastyears.
Our synthesis of fossil, archeological, genetic and behavioral evidence indicates that long-term interactions with humans shaped orangutans in some pretty profound ways. These orangutans weathered many environmental changes and may even have lived in a wider range of environments than their modern counterparts.
That ability to survive in a range of habitats may persist today. In reasonably good habitats, a population can support 1 percent loss per year. Two to 3 percent is enough to drive the population to extinction. Because female orangutans have babies only every eight to 10 years, the slowest known reproductive rate of any mammal.
Conversely, the researchers found that orangutans are able to live in logged forests and even spend time in oil palm plantations. The researchers say this calls for a multifaceted approach to orangutan conservation that incorporates human-dominated landscapes but reduces hunting and increases habitat quality and connectivity.
Such an approach requires developing sound policies, enforcing existing laws and promoting cooperation among stakeholders.A study published October 14 in PLoS One finds that orangutans depend on very high-calorie foods for their survival.
That means that any new habitats the apes colonize will need to have ready food. The oil palm companies that currently have orangutans on their land are held responsible for protecting and effectively managing remaining orangutan habitats; 3. Feb 15, · Borneo Lost More Than , Orangutans From to land clearance for agriculture and mining that destroyed their habitats, according to a study in Study Pierces Orangutans.
Jul 15, · Our study looked at two different ways of maintaining the number of wild orangutans.
The first was to provide extra protection for wild orangutans in their forest habitat (strategy P). The loss of habitats is the greatest threat to the endangered orangutans, and now a new study says their existence could be further jeopardized if conservation efforts don’t include reintroducing these great apes into natural environments with enough high-energy food for them to survive.
Poachers. Orangutans are beautiful animals, but there isn’t just one type of orangutan, there are three species – and the continued deforestation of their rainforest habitats .