To the surprise to almost no one, I found this very interesting.
“He had cuts on his face, on his head, back, hands, and legs,” recalls researcher Matt Nowak. “They even found some air rifle pellets inside his body”—indicating torment and harassment by people. Despite veterinary treatment, the orangutan, named Raya, died eight days later.
But Raya lives on as the representative member of a new orangutan species, Pongo tapanuliensis, or the Tapanuli orangutan—the rarest great ape species on the planet.
An adult male Tapanuli orangutan in the Batang Toru Forest.
PHOTOGRAPH BY TIM LAMAN, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE