Monday, September 5, 2011


And obligingly will pose for
a photo with the kids too!

Discovery News
Analysis by Jennifer Viegas
Mon Aug 22, 2011 12:33 PM ET

An Orang Utan at Tokyo's Tama Zoo has become an Internet star thanks to a video that shows the tidy primate cleaning itself with a washcloth. The two-minute clip, shot on an 86 degree day at the zoo, shows the Orang Utan dipping a washcloth in water, wringing it out and wiping its face and upper body. The primate even mops up spilt water droplets afterward. Source and video here.

Orangutans are the only exclusively Asian genus of extant great ape. The largest living arboreal animals, they have proportionally longer arms than the other, more terrestrial, great apes. They are among the most intelligent primates and use a variety of sophisticated tools, also making sleeping nests each night from branches and foliage.

Their hair is typically reddish-brown, instead of the brown or black hair typical of other great apes. An infant weighs around half a kilo at birth. Adult females grow to 1.3 metres in height and can weigh 45kg. Males can sometimes reach 1.8 metres in height and can weigh over 120kg.

Orang Utans are the slowest breeding of all primates and, at eight years, have the longest inter-birth interval of any land-based mammal. A female Orang Utan will normally have her first infant between the ages of 12 and 15.

Offspring are dependent on their mothers for at least five years and with a life expectancy of 45 years plus, females will normally have no more than three offspring.

With these factors combined, the Orang Utan population, especially small fragmented populations, are at considerable risk. These amazing apes are extremely endangered and we must act now to ensure their existence in the future.

The Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre was established in 1964 to return orphaned apes back to the wild. The centre, located near the town of Sandakan, is one of the best places on earth to see the famous wild man of Borneo in its natural habitat.

Here at the Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Center, the largest and oldest of its kind on earth, a dedicated team of professionals work tirelessly to assist orphaned, abandoned or abused Orang Utans to learn the survival skills they need to return to their natural habitat - the teeming jungles of Borneo.

The objectives of the project include public education on conservation, research and assistance to other endangered species such as captive breeding of the rare and endangered rhinoceros. Considering how difficult it is to see an orangutan in the wild, the Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary offers an exceptionally rare experience.

Visitors are confined to wooden walkways with the twice daily feeding times being the easiest for visitors to observe the majestic animals. The Sepilok centre supplements the rehabilitated Orang Utan's diet with a feeding at 10.00am and 3.00pm.

An open access feeding station continues to lure and supplement the diet of the now wild Orang Utans. During this time, visitors to the Sanctuary can observe the great apes slowly emerge from the rainforest to be fed by the rangers, socializing and partaking in an afternoon snack.

If you are a nature lover and Orang Utan enthusiast this is a perfect destination for you. 
More on Orang Utan below;

.... Sepilok Orang Utan Sanctuary, Sabah, here.

.... Orang Utan Project at Sepilok, here.

.... Orang Utan Conservancy, here.

.... Orang Utan Foundation, here.


  1. hi katrina, how interesting to read about the orang utan taking his own bath and even wiping the wet floor afterwards. ha ha ha

    i have never been to the sepilok center inj sandakan, though i have been to sabah a few times. this is because the center is situated very far away from kota kinabalu.

    wonder if the orang utan at sepilok can wipe take their own furs :) i am sure they too have some special talents

  2. Wow, an incredible post again! Orangutangs are amazing animals and the way you said that he was wiping himself with a cloth, I really want my kids to see that! Thanks for sharing this post!

  3. Wow, we had this story presented several times in Romania too, it seems that he became really really famous.

  4. CV,
    Next trip to Sabah, make sure you visit Sepilok. It is only 25mins by air, and stay at least 3days. They also have one of the largest Crocodile farm and Gomantong Caves, one of the renown caves for the exotic 'birds nest' harvesting.

    And the seafood and veges.. Fresh! fresh! fresh!

    Hi Purabi,
    One of our branch office is in Sandakan, so Sepilok is a must if we are in Sandakan. Few years ago they freely approach visitors, sit and have drinks with us! Really fun to touch and cuddle the young ones.

    Today they are no longer allowed to come too close to visitors. (One of the reason is to protect them from contracting diseases from us humans!).