Orangutans at a south Florida attraction are learning new ways to communicate, making sign language a thing of the past.

Zookeepers at Miami's Jungle Island are using iPads to teach orangutans a new form of communication.

The primates are told to match a picture with what a care-giver tells them.

Linda Jacobs hopes the iPad will help to build up the orangutan's vocabulary, to the point where she will be able to ask them what they want to eat.

Ms Jacobs says the younger orangutans, like eight-year-old Peanut, are more interested in the iPad than the older ones.

The hope is that the iPad bridges the gap between humans and primates in order to show visitors just how intelligent they really are.

A researcher first used the iPad with dolphins, then suggested Jungle Island use it with their orangutans.