Learn more about Pongo pygmaeus from the Encyclopedia of Life
Tanjung Puting National Park,
By William Burrard-Lucas
London, England, UK
The orangutan is the largest Asian primate and also
the largest tree-dwelling mammal. Adult males weigh
between 110 and 200 pounds and measure about 5
feet in height. They have longer arms than other apes,
with a spread of about 7 feet. The name of the species
derives from the Malay words orang (man) and (h)utan
(forest): “man of the forest.” These arboreal animals
spend almost all their time in the trees, swinging
between branches, and sleeping each night in nests
built from bent branches.
“Like other great apes, orangutans are highly intelligent
and their youngsters are very playful. This image
was taken deep in the rainforest of southern Borneo.
As the young orangutan played by the water's edge, I
was amazed when he started sucking up water and
squirting it out like a mischievous child!” —WB-L
Canon EOS-1D Mark III; 70-200mm ƒ/2.8 L IS USM lens
at 120mm; 1/200 sec at ƒ/3.5; ISO 400; hand-held.