Baby orangutan hanging out with mom

Photo: Shutterstock

A baby orangutan hangs and swings on a vine at Borneo's Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Center, which was founded in 1964 with the mission of rehabilitating rescued orangutans.

These bulky, rust-colored primates are the largest arboreal animals on Earth. In the wild, they eat, sleep, socialize, reproduce and travel almost exclusively in the thick, leafy canopies of Sumatra and Borneo. Although baby orangutans spend the first four months of life clutching their mother's body, it isn't long before they begin learning to climb on their own. Their strength and ingenuity is a sight to witness!

Sadly, both species of orangutans are listed under the IUCN Red List, with Bornean orangutans labeled as endangered and Sumatran orangutans considered critically endangered. The rapid decrease in their populations can be attributed to a variety of issues, including logging, forest fires, hunting, fragmentation, the illegal pet trade and the conversion of their habitats into plantations for harvesting palm oil.

In an effort to bring attention to these conflicts, International Orangutan Day (Aug. 19) was created to promote orangutan conservation and to encourage cooperation between orangutan-related organizations.

There are plenty of ways to get involved, and what better way to get inspired to help than with a photo roundup of young, wide-eyed orangutans swinging from branches and rope?

Baby orangutan hangs on thick rope

Photo: Shutterstock

Orangutan on tether rope

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Piggyback orangutans

Photo: Ellen Munro/Flickr

Cute baby orangutan hanging

Photo: Shutterstock

Posing orangutan

Photo: Daniel Kleeman/Flickr

Orangutan on a rope ladder

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Orangutan hangs on rope near the grassy ground

Photo: Shutterstock

Orangutan baby and mom hanging on rope

Photo: Shutterstock

Baby orangutan siblings hanging out

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Orangutan on the tree trunk

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Upside down orangutan baby

Photo: Shutterstock

Baby orangutan reaching out

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Orangutan hanging on cage

Photo: Tambako The Jaguar/Flickr

Little orangutan hanging out on rope

Photo: Shutterstock

Orangutan stump

Photo: Shutterstock

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Catie Leary is a photo editor at Mother Nature Network. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.