Big 5s

Leif Cocks

Founder / President, The Orangutan Project

“The orangutan is my favourite ‘animal’ but I firmly believe, and I’ve testified in an Argentinean court, that orangutans are ‘persons’. They’re self-aware, sentient beings, sharing 97 per cent of our DNA, and they’re as intelligent as the average six-year-old child. 

In every sense, they fit the definition of a person, but actually they are a far more noble being than any human. They have incredible strength and terrifyingly large teeth but despite the many thousands of orangutans that have been and continue to be killed by humans, there is not one documented case of an orangutan ever killing a human. They’re just not inclined to kill. 

The good news is that when you protect orangutan habitat, you also save the thousands of vulnerable species that dwell beneath the rainforest canopy. We are preserving vast, majestic, thriving ecosystems. In one of the ecosystems we’ve secured we’re also protecting small but vital populations of Critically Endangered Sumatran tigers, Sumatran elephants, clouded leopards, tapirs, sunbears, Small claw otters, the list goes on.

That said, it can take very different conservation measures to secure some of those species from extinction. For elephants to survive we need robust elephant-human conflict mitigation. For tigers we need to protect not just the tigers themselves from poaching, but smaller animals that are important as tiger prey. 

All of this work is incredibly complex and we know we need to raise at least $20 million every year over the next 10 years to secure and protect these ecosystems and sustainably support local communities, but I challenge you to look into an orangutan mother’s eyes as she’s gently tending her newborn and tell me it isn’t worth it.”

www.orangutan.org.au
www.instagram.com/theorangutanproject

Photo by Leif Cocks

My Big 5

    Orangutans
    Sumatran Tiger
    Sumatran Elephant
    Sumatran Rhino
    Javan Gibbon

Leif Cocks

Founder / President, The Orangutan Project

“The orangutan is my favourite ‘animal’ but I firmly believe, and I’ve testified in an Argentinean court, that orangutans are ‘persons’. They’re self-aware, sentient beings, sharing 97 per cent of our DNA, and they’re as intelligent as the average six-year-old child. 

In every sense, they fit the definition of a person, but actually they are a far more noble being than any human. They have incredible strength and terrifyingly large teeth but despite the many thousands of orangutans that have been and continue to be killed by humans, there is not one documented case of an orangutan ever killing a human. They’re just not inclined to kill. 

The good news is that when you protect orangutan habitat, you also save the thousands of vulnerable species that dwell beneath the rainforest canopy. We are preserving vast, majestic, thriving ecosystems. In one of the ecosystems we’ve secured we’re also protecting small but vital populations of Critically Endangered Sumatran tigers, Sumatran elephants, clouded leopards, tapirs, sunbears, Small claw otters, the list goes on.

That said, it can take very different conservation measures to secure some of those species from extinction. For elephants to survive we need robust elephant-human conflict mitigation. For tigers we need to protect not just the tigers themselves from poaching, but smaller animals that are important as tiger prey. 

All of this work is incredibly complex and we know we need to raise at least $20 million every year over the next 10 years to secure and protect these ecosystems and sustainably support local communities, but I challenge you to look into an orangutan mother’s eyes as she’s gently tending her newborn and tell me it isn’t worth it.”

Photo by Leif Cocks

My Big 5

    Orangutans
    Sumatran Tiger
    Sumatran Elephant
    Sumatran Rhino
    Javan Gibbon

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