Friday, March 26, 2010

Orangutans with Cameras

In Austria there is an orangutan named Nonja, and she lives in Vienna, in the Schönbrunn Zoo, and she is a photographer.  After she takes pictures, there is this wi-fi thingy that posts them on her Facebook page, and people can see them there.

Nonja is 33 years old, which is 231 in dog years.  Nonja used to paint pictures, but now she takes photographs.  And the reason why she does this is that some people at the Samsung Company, which makes cameras, thought it would be good advertising if an orangutan was using one of their cameras.  So they made this digital camera especially for Nonja, and it can't be broken as easily as a regular camera.  Also it gives out a raisin whenever anyone takes a picture.

So the orangutans like to play with it because it gives them raisins.  They don't really think of themselves as photographers.  Mostly, they just like to eat raisins.  Also orangutans like to play with stuff and wiggle it around and make it do whatever it will do.

I wish I had a camera that would give out treats, because if I did, I would find a way to take lots of pictures, even though I don't have opposable thumbs, like orangutans do.  But a camera for dogs should not have raisin treats because raisins are POISONOUS for dogs, at least if you eat a whole bunch of them, like a boxful or a cameraful.  So the treats inside a camera for dogs should probably be freeze-dried liver or something like that.

Anyway, I think probably anybody can go to Nonja's Facebook page and look at the photos.  At least I hope that anybody can.  Mom and I went there and looked at them, but Mom has a Facebook page, so she didn't have any trouble seeing Nonja's page.  Nonja has more than 83,000 fans, which means she is very popular.  And now Mom is one of her fans, too.

Orangutans are what's called "great apes."  They live in Asia, in the rainforests of Malaysia and Indonesia.  They have really long arms, and they can hang onto tree branches with their hands or their feet.  In fact, they like to spend most of their time in trees, and they even sleep in trees at night.  The word orangutan is made from the Malay words orang, which means "man" and hutan, which means "forest."  So an orangutan is a "man of the forest."

The thing that orangutans mostly like to eat is fruit.  They especially like fruit with sugary or fatty pulp, like ficus fruits.  Besides fruit, they also eat leaves, shoots, bark, insects, honey, and bird eggs.

Orangutans are some of the smartest primates, which is why they can be photographers.  Also they sometimes make and use tools, which is another thing that shows how smart they are.

There are not a whole lot of orangutans left in the wild, and that means that orangutans are ENDANGERED.  Of course, they are not as cute as humans, but they are interesting to look at, and they can do clever things, so I think it would be good to have them around for a while!

1 comment: