Save Primates in Rain Forests

Posted by in Orangutan, Rain Forest on 22. May, 2009 | No Comments

Borneo Lowland Rain Forests are the richest rain forests in the world and rival the diversity of New Guinea and the Amazon. These forests are home to the world’s endangered orangutan.

Unfortunately, these forests have been rapidly converted to oil palm plantations or commercially logged at unprecedented rates over the past ten years. In 1997-1998 fires intentionally set to clear the forest for commercial agriculture such as oil palm ravaged Kalimantan. If the current trend of habitat destruction continues, there will be no remaining lowland forests in Borneo an Eco disaster for all forest insects, amphipians, and animals.

Borneo’s lowland forests are home to the globally recognized primate orangutan. The prehistoric race of orangutan distribution reached mainland Asia through Indochina and Thailand to southeastern China. Today the orangutan is limited to northern Sumatra and Borneo . Unlike other apes, orangutans are solitary and arboreal. They feed primarily on fruit but also feed on leaves, flowers, insects, and, during times of food stress, specifically bark . The orangutans move throughout the forest, following the fruiting of numerous trees. They have the ability to catalog the location and degree of a fruit’s ripeness for a large number of trees and species .

Save Primates

Save Primates

The orangutan is not the only primate in Borneo’s lowland forests. They are home to thirteen primate species: three apes (the orangutan and two gibbon species), five langurs, two macaques, the tarsier (Tarsius bancanus), the slow loris (Nycticebus coucang), and the endangered proboscis monkey (Nasalis larvatus). Most of these species have overlapping ranges, but they vary with respect to dietary content and foraging strategy .

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