Male orangutan face with cheek pads

Orangutan

Life in the trees

Type

Image of a giant panda

Mammals

Area

Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia

Endangered Status

Endangered

facts

size
4.5 feet
height; females are smaller
An average refrigerator is 5.8 feet tall.
Orangutan sitting next to a refrigerator
food
fruit
and more
Omnivore
Omnivore

Orangutans also eat shoots, bark, leaves, seeds, and insects.

habitat
rainforest
rainforest habitat leaves

description

Orangutan baby swinging by long arms from ropes

Branching out

Orangutans spend most of their lives in trees forests in Sumatra and Borneo. They get their food from the trees, and they build nests in the branches to sleep in. Their long arms help them swing from tree to tree. They use their hands and feet to grab and hold tree branches and food. Orangutans are very smart. They sit under leafy branches for protection from rain and sun, and sometimes even put a very large leaf on their head like a rain hat!

Orangutan call
Orangutan mother and baby

Family life

Orangutans don’t live in big family groups like other great apes. An adult female will live with her children, but that is the largest grouping. Adult males usually live alone. Orangutans have a very loud call they use to find one another during the mating season.

Baby orangutan eating leaves as it hangs from a jungle gym rope

Threats they face

Orangutans need trees to survive, but they are endangered because forests are quickly being cut down in their habitat. They are also threatened by the pet trade because hunters will often kill the mothers to capture baby orangutans.