Glad Worldwide Orangutan Day! | Cincinnati Zoo Weblog

As we speak we rejoice probably the most endangered apes on the planet: orangutans! The Jungle Trails crew cares for one particular Sumatran orangutan right here on the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Backyard, Henry! Orangutans are thought of semi-solitary apes in order that they spend extra time alone than with others. Whereas Henry has had feminine orangutan companions up to now, he has proven a choice to a bachelor life-style which we respect. Henry can usually be discovered “hanging” round along with his gibbon pals Lance and Hosen.

Categorised as critically endangered, Sumatran orangutans are considered one of 2 subspecies of orangutan (the opposite being Bornean). Orangutans are the one non-human nice apes discovered outdoors of Africa and stay in Indonesian and Malaysian rainforests. These apes are the biggest tree-dwelling animal and the one true arboreal ape. In actual fact, the identify “orangutan” interprets to “man of the forest” in Malay, the official language of Malaysia. Not like different nice apes, that are terrestrial and use a type of locomotion referred to as “knuckle strolling”, orangutans are thought of modified brachiators. This implies whereas their gibbon pals (true brachiators) might swing from department to department, orangutans use their lengthy arms to maneuver fastidiously from department to department. Since they spend a majority of their lives in tree canopies, a few of their largest threats are habitat loss and fragmentation, and deforestation.

Some male orangutans develop fatty cheek pads referred to as flange on either side of their face, which is what provides them a definite face form. You can also make your individual orangutan masks by following the directions under!

Shut Sufficient to Care:

The zoo has a mission of getting visitors “shut sufficient to care” which is necessary for not solely our visitor expertise but in addition our conservation efforts. For our employees and animals, nonetheless, this objective takes on a complete totally different that means. Jungle Trails keeper Stephanie talks about how we use shut relationships, and constructive reinforcement, to deal with Henry:

Monitoring coronary heart well being is a vital part of caring for the apes on the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Backyard.  We started conditioning Henry, together with the bonobos and gorillas, to obtain an awake echocardiogram, an ultrasound of the guts, in 2011.  In doing this, we might have the flexibility to have a look at how the guts is functioning with out having to have the animal underneath anesthesia.

There are a lot of steps that lead as much as this – constructing a relationship with Henry by way of constructive rewards, discovering what meals inspire him probably the most, and introducing all the tools wanted to carry out the ultrasound.  We started with a faux ultrasound probe made with a PVC pipe with an finish cap on it, simply so he would get aware of the feeling of it urgent on his chest.  When he was snug with that we began so as to add slightly little bit of ultrasound gel, which is important for the pictures to come back by way of.  Henry has by no means been a fan of the gel, however will endure it for some grapes and yogurt!   After this step, we launched a small ultrasound machine, simply robust sufficient to see the guts to know the place the proper spot was on Henry to get the pictures of his coronary heart.  The ultimate step was to herald the massive ultrasound machine and likewise get Henry used to seeing our volunteer technician, Jenny Schaaf, who would run the machine and talk to me which method to flip the probe to get all the pictures she wanted. Henry fortunately was not phased by the machine in any respect and did very effectively with seeing a brand new face!

In addition to Henry did, male orangutans are extraordinarily tough to get nice pictures on.  They’ve a big air sac that drapes over their chest and likewise a distinguished rib cage.  Since Henry’s coronary heart was wholesome at the moment, he solely obtained an ultrasound throughout his common checkups whereas underneath anesthesia.  Throughout his final checkup although, it was discovered that he had the beginning of some heart problems.  With this analysis, we determined to start out up the awake echocardiograms and make some modifications to assist with the problems we had up to now.  Our upkeep crew has constructed a “coronary heart field” that matches over the port we use for Henry’s blood stress sleeve.  It can enable Henry to face able the place his air sac can lay on prime of this metal mesh field and his chest might be nearer and extra accessible for the ultrasound probe to seize the pictures wanted.  Henry is doing nice along with his conditioning, he picked proper again up the place we left off like a professional!

Together with echocardiograms, blood stress is one other necessary issue of coronary heart well being that may inform us so much about how our our bodies are functioning.  Henry’s blood stress coaching began in 2018.  Just like the ultrasounds, there have been an excellent many steps that led as much as reaching this habits.  Designing the metal mesh sleeve that Henry would place his arm into, discovering the best dimension cuff, getting Henry used to all the shifting components and likewise used to the feeling of the cuff squeezing his arm.  His main trainers labored diligently to make this course of a hit and Henry’s first readings have been recorded in March of 2019!  Some modifications wanted to be made to verify the readings have been correct, and now Henry voluntarily has his blood stress monitored a number of occasions a month, so long as there’s pineapple concerned!”

The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Backyard, and the Affiliation of Zoos & Aquariums, are each taking motion to assist orangutans, and you’ll too! Right here’s how one can assist:


Good-looking Henry

Henry and Lance the Mueller gibbon

Henry and Hosen

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