International Orangutan Day

International Orangutan Day

Diego Roberts, Features Editor

The earth is home to millions of different animals. Some of those magnificent animals, though, are facing endangerment and the possibility of extinction. One of those animals is the orangutan, and with International Orangutan Day coming up so soon on August 19th (tomorrow!), we here at the Texan times have decided to share some facts! 

Orangutan Facts! 

1. Orangutans are the largest and heaviest tree-dwelling animals.

Orangutans measure at around 5 feet and 200 lbs, which makes them very slow movers! To move all this mass, they need to have immense strength in their arms so that they can swing around on trees. This leaves their legs to be rather weak in comparison to their arms.

2. Orangutans are very closely related to humans. 

Humans and Orangutans share 97% of their dna! Studies also show that orangutans are very intelligent. They have proved to be better at building tools than young human children. They are so much like humans, that they have been found to find laughter contagious and even show signs of empathy.

3. Orangutans have a very diverse diet.

Wild orangutans eat more than 400 different varieties of plants! Although they favor durians which they need to use tools to open. While 90% of the orangutan diet consists of fruit, they also eat leaves, bark, insects, and occasionally meat.

4. Orangutans build nests every night.

For shelter, orangutans build nests up to 60 feet high in trees. They use branches to create a foundation and fill it with soft branches and leaves to be used as a “mattress”. Each day, the orangutan takes down its nest and builds a new one in a new location.

5. Orangutans have really long arms.

Orangutans’ arms can grow to be up to six feet long, far surpassing their own height!. They need these long arms to swing from trees and use them as crutches when they walk. Orangutans also have excellent muscle control in their arms that helps them grab things and hold things extremely precisely.

To support this endangered species, please visit and learn more about this beautiful animal. Any money donated to this website will be used to help protect orangutans.