In the wild, orangutans live among lush flora and a variety of tree species, so their diet is very diverse. The menu of these arboreal mammals consists mainly of fruit, which makes up more than 60% of their diet. Figs are the most commonly eaten, accounting for up to 90% of the orangutan diet in some regions of Indonesia and Malaysia.
In addition to fruit, orangutans also eat leaves, seeds, flowers and the honey they find in the nests of wild bees. Their diet is also not lacking in protein, which they obtain from eating insects, small mammals, bird eggs and turtles.
One of the orangutans’ favourite foods is durians. They are a fruit with an extremely strong smell, considered by some to be the most smelly in the world. Despite the fact that many people are repelled by their smell, durians are a rich source of vitamins and minerals and are therefore an important part of the orangutans’ diet.
When faced with limited access to fruit, orangutans abandon herbivory and happen to hunt small mammals. Mammal eating by orangutans is rare and is most often on small mammals such as birds, squirrels or rodents. One of the orangutan’s prey is the wyrak (Tarsius) a small nocturnal monkey.
Despite their impressive size, these arboreal mammals eat a relatively small amount of food. An adult orangutan can eat between 2 and 3 kilograms of food per day, due to their low metabolic rate and low physical activity.
Goal: 25 minutes
Time: To consolidate knowledge of orangutan nutrition, visual memory training
- 2 sheets of A4 paper (black or dark green)
- Scissors Glue Printed sheets with leaves and animals (attachment available for download on the left side)
Course of the task
Before starting the activity, you should print the leaves and animals from attachment 2.1. It’s a good idea to print multiple sets of leaf cards for each child. Then, the children can color and cut out the animals and leaves. The more colorful and creative their work, the better! Next, you’ll need to attach the A4 sheets together so that they touch along their shorter sides. Children can then glue the leaves and animals onto the created panel. This can be done as a group activity or individually.
The post was created as part of a project co-financed by the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt in cooperation with Naturschutzzentrum Oberlausitzer Bergland.