Wildlife Conservation Efforts

Orangutan uses Plant to treat wound


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Orangutan and its natural habitat

Mains level: NA

Why in the news?

An orangutan was observed treating a wound with medicine from a tropical plant, showcasing how some animals employ natural remedies to alleviate their ailments.

  • This behavior, documented in a recent study published in Scientific Reports, represents a novel instance of self-medication among wild animals.

About Orangutans

  • Orangutans, are distinguished by their vivid red fur, are the largest arboreal mammals and spend the majority of their time in trees and forests.
  • The name “orangutan” translates to “man of the forest” in Malay.
  • They possess long, powerful arms and grasping hands and feet that facilitate movement through the branches.
  • Highly intelligent, these great apes share 96.4% of genetic makeup of modern man.
  • Orangutans primarily inhabit the tropical rainforests of Southeast Asia, specifically on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra.
  • Conservation Status: Critically Endangered (IUCN Red list)
  • Population: Bornean (Approximately 104,700); Sumatran (Approximately 13,846); Tapanuli (Around 800);
  • Behavioral Features:
    • These apes lead mostly solitary lives in the lowland forests, dining on wild fruits such as lychees, mangosteens, and figs, and drinking water collected in tree cavities.
    • Orangutans are mainly frugivorous, they primarily eat fruits, and consume leaves, bark, insects, and occasionally small animals.
    • They construct nests in trees with vegetation for sleeping at night and resting during the day.
    • And, now they are found treating a wound with medicine from a Tropical plant.


[2013] Consider the following:

  1. Star tortoise
  2. Monitor lizard
  3. Pygmy hog
  4. Spider monkey

Which of the above are naturally found in India?

(a) 1, 2 and 3 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 4 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3 and 4

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