08/22/2011 06:36 pm ET | Updated Oct 22, 2011

Orangutan Overload (PHOTOS)

Orangutans have been making quite a splash in news this summer.

Most recently, people watched in awe as an orangutan at Japan's Tama Zoo cooled off in a shockingly human manner, wiping his face with a wet towel.

In June, National Geographic captured on film an orangutan named Suryia befriending a hound dog named Roscoe.

Unfortunately, orangutans face many threats. Palm oil plantations have recently emerged as a cash crop for fuel and food, but production can not only destroy rain forests but also may endanger the orangutan population. Earlier this year, two Girl Scouts raised awareness about the plight of the orangutan, challenging the makers of their Girl Scout cookies to remove palm oil from the ingredients.

Michelle Desilets, executive director of the Orangutan Land Trust, told, "We have found orangutans beaten to death with wooden planks and iron bars, butchered by machetes, beaten unconscious and buried alive, and doused with petrol and set alight."

According to National Geographic, orangutans are also threatened by deforestation and hunting.

Check out some of our favorite Getty images of orangutans below: