Getting To Know Them Better

Christopher and his older brother, Pongo, were infants at a Florida tourist attraction and became the first orangutan residents at the sanctuary. Typically, adult male orangutans with full facial flanges (known as “cheekpadders”) would not tolerate another male in their territory, but since they grew up together, Chris and Pongo have a brotherly bond and still enjoy visiting each other as adults.

Nest-building is one of Christopher’s favorite activities. He will make nests with palm fronds, banana leaves, cardboard boxes, and fleece blankets. He also used to love wearing hats and would wear boxes, burlap bags, or buckets on his head. But as an adult male, he is much more reserved now. Even though he is one of the largest apes at the sanctuary, he is one of the most gentle. He shares his habitat with his companion, Pebbles, with who he is completely enamored.

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Interesting Facts

  • He likes to make tools and “modifies” toys and branches in order to reach food and objects outside of his habitat.
  • He is a very calm and watchful orangutan, and one of the heartiest eaters we have at the sanctuary; there isn’t a food he doesn’t like!


It costs $22,000 a year to care for one of our apes. By symbolically adopting the ape of your choice for a one-time donation of $300 OR just $25 a month for one year, you are helping ensure the health, safety, and well-being of your orangutan or chimpanzee.

Can't Adopt?

In addition to cash donations, the Center for Great Apes is always in need of food, enrichment items, and supplies. We welcome gifts of all kinds.


Want to know what we need? We have a list of things we would like to have.

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