Dear MEL Topic Readers,
A battle to save Indonesia's orangutans
The orangutans are species of great apes native to Indonesia and Malaysia but they are now only found in the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra. As they live in the trees and eat fruits mostly, forests are their natural habitat. There used to be nearly 300,000 orangutans in the wild, but the most recent estimate says there are only around 100,000 of them and the number is rapidly decreasing. Indeed, they are one of the most critically endangered species.
Despite the Indonesian government’s attempt to protect the wild forests in the area where the remaining endangered species inhabit, development projects haven’t been ceased yet. The investors claim that they had put so much money already, and people want jobs, too. Local farmers in the area also want to use the land for their living.
The population of Indonesia is 267 million for now and is going to add another 100 million in the next decade while the population of wild orangutans is expected to be halved in the same period.
Though Orangutans are among the most intelligent primates, they don’t seem to be able to figure out how to cope with the intrusion by other primates.
Enjoy reading the article and think when humans learn to balance economy and ecology.