The islands of Borneo and Sumatra in Southeast Asia are home to some of the oldest and most diverse rainforests in the world. Orangutans and thousands of other unique species live in these forests; from the charismatic pygmy elephants and Sumatran rhinos to the distinctive looking hornbills.
But orangutans and other species on these islands are being pushed to the edge of extinction as tropical rainforests are cleared. Conversion of forest habitat for agricultural use such as oil palm plantations is the main threat to orangutans living in Borneo and Sumatra.
Only 60,000 Bornean and 6,600 Sumatran orangutans are thought to remain in the wild and numbers are in decline; most populations are also found outside of protected areas. We need to work hard and quickly to save Asia’s Great Apes.
We support conservation projects fighting to protect the forest ecosystem and the many species that exist within them, working with several partners on both islands. Our major focus is on the highly important Lower Kinabatangan Wildlife Sanctuary in Sabah State; home to the largest orangutan population in Malaysian Borneo.
Find out how you, your school or organisation can get involved this October and help save orangutans in the wild.
Our partners in this region, HUTAN-KOCP, approach conservation holistically, combining scientific research with protection and management of wildlife habitat. Inclusion of the local community is paramount, which is why capacity building, awareness campaigns and community outreach, as well as development projects, are foremost in the implementation of their work.
Using our staff expertise, we assist our partners in conservation activities and are actively involved in work targeting the issue of unsustainable palm oil. But the threats continue to persist, and to protect these islands and their amazing biodiversity in the future we need your help.
November is here, which means another successful Go Orange for Orangutans campaign is over (until next year). We would just like to say a big thank you to everyone who took part.
In support of Go Orange for Orangutans our Zoo Rangers have spent October with the orangutans in the Realm of the Red Ape, find out why here.
Four year old Bradley managed to take time out of his busy half term schedule to chat to us about his amazing fundraising activities for orangutans in the wild.