Captive orangutans in Indonesia may be freed (AP) – 219th Edition

In this Monday, Jan. 10, 2011 photo, a juvenile orangutan peers from the slats of a wooden sleeping cage at a care center in Pasir Panjang, Central Kalimantan, Indonesia. Hundreds of orangutans live at the rehabilitation center waiting to be released into the wild. A half-century ago, more than three-quarters of Indonesia, a sprawling archipelagic nation spanning the width of the United States, was blanketed in plush tropical rainforest. But in the rush to supply the world with pulp, paper and, more recently palm oil — used in everything from lipstick and soap to 'clean-burning' fuel — half those trees have been cleared. For the first time in years, scientist Birute Mary Galdikas has hopes of releasing them into the wild, thanks to a Hong Kong-based development company's plans to protect a 224,866-acre stretch of forest. (AP Photo/Dita Alangkara) PART OF A 13-PICTURE PACKAGE BY DITA ALANGKARAAP – Their black eyes peer from the slats of wooden cages, hundreds of orangutans orphaned after their mothers were shot or hacked to death for straying out of Indonesia’s rapidly disappearing forests in search of food.

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