A chance to save the Tapanuli orangutan?

Beta, an adult female orangutan with her two year old infant, Bitang. New orangutan species discovered in Batang Toru, North Sumatra. They are on the brink of extinction due to a hydropower dam project. Contact: Helen Buckland SOS. Picture: Andrew Walmsley

A chance to save the Tapanuli orangutan?

Will the COVID19 pandemic give conservationists a chance to save the world's most endangered great ape, the Critically Endangered Tapanuli orangutan?

The planned Batang Toru hydroelectric dam poses serious threats to the survival of the Critically Endangered Tapanuli orangutan (Pongo tapanuliensis) – the world’s rarest great ape, with just over 700 individuals estimated to remain. The COVID-19 pandemic has now led to the postponement of the project. Erik Meijaard and Serge Wich have written an update on the delays and the resulting unexpected opportunity to reconsider development plans and ward off the extinction of the species.

Read their letter here.

Donate to the fight to save the species here.

A chance to save the Tapanuli orangutan?

Zac Mills

An adult sumatran orangutan

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