Extinct giant ape directly linked to the living orangutan

By using ancient protein sequencing, researchers have retrieved genetic information from a 1.9 million year old extinct, giant primate that used to live in a subtropical area in southern China. The genetic information allows ...

Orangutans hold the key to human speech

New research, led by scientists from the University of St Andrews and Indianapolis Zoo, shows that great apes can control their voice in a similar way to humans, giving a unique insight into the evolution of human language.

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Orangutan

Pongo pygmaeus Pongo abelii

The orangutans are two species of great apes. Known for their intelligence, they live in trees and are the largest living arboreal animal. They have longer arms than other great apes, and their hair is typically reddish-brown, instead of the brown or black hair typical of other great apes. Native to Indonesia and Malaysia, they are currently found only in rainforests on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra, though fossils have been found in Java, the Thai-Malay Peninsula, Vietnam and China. There are only two surviving species in the genus Pongo and the subfamily Ponginae, which includes the extinct genera Gigantopithecus and Sivapithecus.

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