How do they live in the wild?
Unlike their close relatives, the chimpanzees and gorillas, Orangutans do not live in large social or family groups. Semi-solitary animals, the adult males are usually found alone and adult females are generally accompanied by one or two offspring. Adolescent Orangutans are the most sociable, spending up to half of their time in small groups (between 2 and 5 individuals).
Adult male Orangutans are much larger than adult females. They are able to grow to 5 feet in height and average 120 kilos in weight. Adult females, on the other hand, only grow to about 4 feet in height and 45 kilos in weight. Unlike females, adult males also have large cheek pads and a large pouch of skin under their chin.
Orangutans eat leaves, barks, buds, stems, fruit and will occasionally eat insects, although they are mainly frugivorous (fruit eaters). Pregnancies lasts for about eight and a half months. Usually only one infant is born on average of one every seven to eight years. Only very rarely are twins born.
Infants stay with their mothers until they are about 7 or 8 years old, as they have a lot to learn before they can survive in the forest without their mother. Female Orangutans achieve sexual maturity between the ages of 9 and 12 years, while males do so between 8 and 15 years. However, development of the adult male secondary sexual characteristics (cheek pads and throat pouch) may sometimes be delayed until they are twenty years old.