Indonesian Activists Rescue Rare Albino Orangutan

By on

CCSS NAS-3 NCSS-9 Word Search
Rare Albino Orangutan (Photo Credit: BOSF via Facebook)

On April 29, officials at the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) received a tip from the local police chief that some villagers in Indonesia’s West Kalimantan province were holding a Bornean orangutan captive. When the rescue team arrived at the Tanggirang village they discovered that instead of the signature orange-reddish brown hair, the great ape had white hair, a paler skin color, and blue eyes. The mammal was also very sensitive to light.

A preliminary examination by medical experts revealed that the great ape is an extremely rare albino orangutan. This is the first such specimen encountered by the non-profit since it was founded to conserve the endangered Bornean orangutan and its habitat 25 years ago. The five-year-old female, who was in captivity for two days before being rescued, is currently undergoing health tests at the foundation’s rehabilitation center. Officials say they will decide on whether to release the great ape back into the wild or keep her at the center, which currently houses almost 750 orangutans, once they are assured she is healthy.

Photo Credit: BOSF via Facebook

Orangutans are the only members of the great ape family which includes gorillas, chimpanzees, and bonobos, that are endemic to Asia, not Africa. They are also the only great apes that spend most of their lives in trees, making them the largest tree-living mammal in the world. Unfortunately, the population of both species of orangutans – Bornean and Sumatran — has declined sharply over the past few decades. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) estimates that there are currently just over 100,000 Bornean orangutans and less than 7,500 Sumatran orangutans left in the wild.

The drastic population decline is largely due to the loss of habitat as Indonesia’s rainforests continue to be destroyed to make room for palm oil plantations. Hopefully, the ongoing efforts by organizations like BOSF will ensure that these intelligent, gentle giants, who share nearly 97% of their DNA with humans, do not disappear altogether.

Resources: worldwildlife.org, orangutan.or.id, orangutan.com

Generate citations in MLA, APA & Chicago formats for this article.

VocabularyPlay Game

albinocaptivedecadesdeclinedrasticencounteredendangeredendemichabitatmammalpreliminaryrehabilitationsensitivesignaturespecies
Name:
Date:

Reading Comprehension (9 questions)

  1. What tip did the officials at the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation receive on April 29?
  2. Why were the rescuers surprised when they saw the captive orangutan?
Name:
Date:

Critical Thinking Challenge

Do you think the rare orangutan should be released back into the wild or...

Name:
Date:

Vocabulary in Context

“The drastic population decline is largely due to the loss of habitat as Indonesia’s rainforests continue to be destroyed to make room for palm oil...

351 Comments
Sign in to use your custom avatar.
  • girls.girlsTuesday, September 11, 2018 at 6:41 am
    this will be perfect for my new article in school tomorrow as a presentation. :D
    • yoloness5 5Wednesday, May 23, 2018 at 10:51 am
      wow i am glad that they are safe! well that one
      • JupeterWednesday, May 16, 2018 at 8:39 am
        0.0. They might go extinct? But I LOVE orangutans! Man, that story taught me a lot!
        • VinnyprimatefanFriday, May 4, 2018 at 9:45 am
          I hope the orangutans will not go extinct
          • dudeWednesday, April 25, 2018 at 11:03 am
            how so rare? I love orangutans
            • just chillenThursday, March 29, 2018 at 2:41 pm
              wow
              • arcticwolf5
                arcticwolf5Wednesday, March 21, 2018 at 7:22 pm
                So glad it got saved!
                • catlover1527
                  catlover1527Tuesday, March 20, 2018 at 11:41 am
                  CUTE!!! im so glad it was rescued!
                  • ooofnenfinThursday, March 1, 2018 at 5:30 pm
                    its only $399
                    • OmgMonday, February 26, 2018 at 5:54 pm
                      I’m so glad it was saved

                      Recent Comments

                      Alien Outbuster wrote:

                      One word... WOW!
                      Usain Bolt, Fastest Human On Ear...

                      Inserts name I wrote:

                      That was amazing, i can't believ...
                      How Online Gaming Platform Roblo...

                      Shadow wrote:

                      That is luxury
                      Eco-Friendly Airlander 10 Will S...

                      Our Apps and Plugins

                      Awards

                      ALA