This is a picture of Tori. Tori is an orangutan
. An orangutan is kind of like a very distant cousin of humans. And like some humans, Tori has a smoking problem.
That’s right, an orangutan who smokes. Sounds pretty unusual, right? Apparently it’s not as uncommon as one might think. There are tons of videos of orangutans puffing away on YouTube:
Tori’s just a sort of a posterchild for smoking orangutans.
Concerned for her wellbeing, Tori’s keepers at the Taru Jurug zoo in the Indonesian city of Solo have joined up with the Centre for Orangutan Protection (COP
) to help her kick her bad habit. In the end, Tori began smoking like many humans do. She would see humans visiting the zoo smoking, and over time she tried to imitate their behaviour. Unable to just walk over to the corner shop and buy a pack, Tori scavenged butts discarded near the floor of her cage or smoked cigarettes given to her directly by vistors.
Identifying that Tori’s habit was highly dependent on her exposure to humans, the zoo and COP came up with a plan to move her to a small island within the zoo, which means Tori’s going cold turkey. And just to make extra sure that she can’t bum any cigarettes from visitors, her handlers plan on stationing zoo guides next to her new home, who will not only provide valuable information about orangutans, but also run interference if anyone tries to sneak her a smoke.