Saturday, March 28, 2009

Orangutan rescue

I was amazed to see these photos of a mother orangutan swimming a flooded river with her baby in her arm after being stuck in a tree for what some reports said may have been days.    Local wildlife rangers had tried to build a rope bridge to rescue her but failed and in an apparent final attempt threw a rope out to her.  To everyone's surprise she caught the rope, entered the water and swam across to the river bank carrying her baby to safety.

If anyone doubts the intelligence of these creatures then consider this.   The act shows a knowledge of danger, it shows an amazing degree of forethought, it shows understanding and faith in the rope itself and possibly in the people who threw it out ot her.   These are what make me re consider what qualities are in a creature that make it human and what right we have to believe in our arrogance, that we have the monopoly on that elusive concept of humanity.

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