Category Archives: Local Communities

Yayorin’s mobile conservation bus

We recently received a comment on our orangutan.org.uk/blog from Dwi Triyanto asking about Yayorin’s mobile bus. Eddy Santoso, from Yayorin, has sent this short update. You can find out more about Yayorin’s inspiring work on their Facebook page.

 

Eddy Santoso of Yayorin

‘Yayorin’s Mobile Bus has been busy ferrying various organisations including the Indonesian Forestry Department’s fire-fighting agency (Manggala Agni), Agency for Conservation of Natural Resources (BKSDA Kalteng SKW II) and students from the Conservation Club of 3 high schools in Pangkalan Bun, Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.  The groups all assisted with reforestation in Tanjung Keluang Natural Tourism Park, where hawksbill turtles and green turtles lay their eggs.

Yayorin’s mobile bus on a school visit. Photo by Yayorin

In April and May of this year the bus transported the public to plant trees as part of Earth Day and also took students from a local school to the forests of Tanjung Puting National Park. Last month, the bus transported 180 student from Pangkalan Bun to Yayorin’s Sustainable Integrated Agriculture Learning Centre at the village of Sungai Sintuk for a 3 day field trip. The bus is out and about spreading Yayorin’s message ‘People need the forests, forests need orangutans‘.”

If you are interested in sponsoring Yayorin’s mobile bus then please contact us for further information or visit their Facebook page.

Thank you for your continued interest and support,

Orangutan Foundation

Orangutan Rescued

Our vet, Dr Wawan, has written this post about the rescue of a female Bornean orangutan, who had been seen in a village rubber plantation and a nearby oil palm plantation.

“We had received information from Bapak Haji Arun and villagers that orangutans have often being seen in Arun’s rubber plantation, eating rubber seeds and bark and also in forest near PT GAP oil plam plantation area.

Our rescue team comprised; PT GAP Oil Palm Plantation (Darman, Erik etc); BKSDA SKW II Kalteng (Muda, As Blek) – Agency for Conservation of Natural Resources; and Orangutan Foundation (Wawan, Tigor, Sariamat, Uduk, Udin).

We arrived on location at 27 june 4.30pm. Based on Pak Erik (PT GAP) information, this place was often passed by orangutans. Sometimes they in rubber plantation at left side of road or sometimes in the forest on the right side. Pak Erik did monitoring for almost two months and he said at least five orangutans often seen there, he also took pictures.

Our team then went to the rubber plantation where we found some nests but no orangutans. We took some photos of the orangutan nests and then as dusk fell, at 6pm, we go to PT. GAP mess to rest.

The next day we arrived on location at 6am, three people had already seen an orangutan in the high branch of tree at the forest area right side of road.

Orangutan Foundation vet, Dr Wawan, prepares darts

After seeing the orangutan I prepare some darts with anesthetic ‘ketamine hcl’ for estimated 30 Kg body weight.

Orangutan high up in tree. Photo by Orangutan Foundation

The deep trench between the road and forest blocked our path. Pak Sariamat, Uduk and I tried to find way around to penetrate the thick bush of forest in order that we could approach the orangutan from behind.

Pitcher plants (Nepenthes) in the forest. Photo by Orangutan Foundation

As Blek (from BKSDA) and Tigor stayed on the road to keep watching the orangutan.  After a while we came up close to the female orangutan but she see us as well. She begins to intimidate us with her voice and by throwing branches at us.

As Blek and Uduk blew the pipe for several times but all missed because she keep moving all the time, sometime sit on very high tree branches so its impossible for syringe dart reach it, we all think it would be easier with a dart gun. We keep following her for many hours but in the end we feel so tired and give up. After take a rest for a while, we decided to go out from the forest and walk to the main road road.  Udin, Orangutan Foundation staff, suddenly saw the orangutan in a tree beside the road. We were surprised and tried to capture her again but even this time we got same result, the orangutan disappeared.

We then decided to check the rubber plantation area. After a short time we found another female orangutan in a rubber tree. We spread our team to surround the target, but it is not that easy, again the orangutan is very active, keep moving. Uduk blew the pipe several times but kept missing. Then we decide to keep follow this orangutan until dusk when she also tired and making a nest for a rest. At 6pm orangutan make a nest and sleeping. We make a sign on that tree and plan to come there tommorow before sun rise.

Fire lit to avoid mosquitos

At 4am the next day we started off to go to the location, day still dark and we use a small flashlight in order to approach to the nest tree. Once there Pak Uduk make a small fire to avoid mosquitos and keep us warm.The orangutan still sleeping in the nest and at 6am as the day brightened she woke and started to move through the rubber trees.

Once she hang on short branch, Uduk blew the pipe and finally the dart needle penetrated her right foot. She still moving and still strong after around 5 minutes.  As Blek tried a second dart needle which successfully penetrated on her left thigh. Two minutes later, the orangutan fell.

Carrying anaesthetised orangutan. Photo by Orangutan Foundation

I give her an examination and she seems healthy. Based from the pattern of teeth she is about 12-15 years age and her body weight was 27.4 Kg.

Veterinary examination of orangutan. Photo by Orangutan Foundation

We finally transported her to Pangkalan Bun where she will be released in the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve.

Orangutan awake from anaesthetic. She will shortly be freed in the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve. Photo by Orangutan Foundation

I thankyou for all support to this rescue, Orangutan Foundation team, BKSDA SKW II Kalteng and also PT GAP for all facilitations and support.

Dr Wawan – Orangutan Foundation Vet

Mitigation of Human-Orangutan Conflicts in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo

One hundred invitations were sent out for the workshop Mitigation of Human-Orangutan Conflicts in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo. The conference room was booked for a capacity of 80, we didn’t want the room to look empty in case there were a number of ‘no shows’. I watched as the room began to fill, more chairs had to be brought in, numbers were now up to 90, a good start already. There was a stir of anticipation, as everyone took their seats.

The workshop began with opening remarks by myself, the head of BKSDA (Agency for Conservation of Natural Resources) and the Bupati’s (Mayor) office. I welcomed the participants by acknowledging we were at the workshop because we recognised the issues of human – orangutan conflict which affects both orangutans and humans and hoped by the end of the day we would have addressed these problems and have workable recommendations for the future. I used the story of Aan, an orangutan who was shot and badly injured in an oil palm plantation, as the catalyst for the campaign.

The morning was taken up by presentations from: Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil Organization, Forina, National Forum for Corporate Social Responsibility , representatives from Oil Palm plantations and the Ministry of Forestry (PHKA).

In the afternoon the participants broke into two working groups which presented an opportunity for different points of view to be exchanged (of which there were many) and to make recommendations. At this point I don’t believe anyone knew what would come next. As each group presented their finding it became obvious there would be some agreement here. The workshop went far beyond agreement, as the moderator called out the recommendations, there was applause after each one!

Finally it was the moment of the signing. It is one thing to verbally agree, but in Indonesia it is a different matter to put your name to something. At the start of the day no one would have expected to accomplish so much in such a short time. Pak Ade (the moderator) asked, “who will sign?”, slowly one hand was raised and then another, very quickly we realised this was going to be a landmark moment. See the signatories below.

Naturally we had high hopes for the day but this was beyond anyone’s expectations. I closed by thanking all participants (thank you to Rob Stuebing for participating) for their confidence in the Foundation, Yayorin and BKSDA to carry this process forward.

Thank you to The Rufford Foundation for their support and commitment.

Ashley Leiman, Director/Trustee Orangutan Foundation

CONCLUSION

WORKSHOP ON MITIGATION OF CONFLICT BETWEEN HUMAN AND ORANGUTAN
IN AND AROUND PALM OIL PLANTATION
Pangkalan Bun, June 4, 2013

1. Protect orangutans in the concession area is the company’s policy which must be supported by adequate facilities including with an increase in human resources in oil palm plantation (eg the formation of the Task Force) and supported by the Government, in this case Natural Resources Conservation Agency of Central Kalimantan;

2. Agreed to form Communication Forum to follow up Workshop on Human-Orangutan Conflict Mitigation in and around the oil palm plantation which was formed by Natural Resources Conservation Agency of Central Kalimantan, which is facilitated by Orangutan Foundation UK and Yayorin, which consists of plantation companies and related stakeholders;

3. Every company is expected to be able to develop a system on Wildlife Database in the oil palm plantations, which form issued by Natural Resources Conservation Agency of Central Kalimantan;

4. Minutes and Conclusions of the Workshop will be sent to each company and will be reported officially by Natural Resources Conservation Agency of Central Kalimantan, Orangutan Foundation UK and Yayorin, the Director General of Protection and Nature Conservation, Ministry of Forestry, Directorate General of Estate Crops, Ministry of Agriculture, West Kotawaringin District, and the governor of Central Kalimantan.
On behalf of the workshop participants:
1. PT. Gunung Sejahtera Ibu Pertiwi
2. PT. Bumitama Gunajaya Agro
3. PT. Citra Borneo Indah
4. PT. Mustika Sembuluh, Wilmar Plantation
5. PT. Sampoerna Agro
6. PT. SMART Tbk
7. PT. Globalindo Alam Perkasa
8. PT. Indotruba Tengah, Minamas Plantation
9. PT. Union Sampoerna Triputra Persada
10. PT. Surya Sawit Sejati
11. Direktorat Konservasi Keanekaragaman Hayati, Ditjen PHKA, Kementerian Kehutanan
12. Komisi Perkebunan Kelapa Sawit Berkelanjutan Indonesia, Ditjen Perkebunan, Kementerian Pertanian
13. Forum Nasional CSR Kesejahteraan Sosial
14. Balai Konservasi Sumber Daya Alam Kalimantan Tengah
15. Balai Taman Nasional Tanjung Puting
16. Badan Perencanaan Pembangunan Daerah Kotawaringin Barat
17. Forum Orangutan Indonesia (FORINA)
18. WWF Indonesia
19. ZSL
20. BOSF
21. Orangutan Foundation International
22. Yayorin (Yayasan Orangutan Indonesia
23. Orangutan Foundation UK

Photos of orangutans’ rescue

Here are the photos of the rescue, of a mother and infant, which we blogged about last month. Now, they are both safely in the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve.

 

Please consider a donation (donate here) to support our vital work.

Thank you,

Orangutan Foundation

 

Belantikan’s big ape count

Determining wild population sizes of orangutans and gibbons, both highly arboreal (tree-dwelling) apes species, is a conservation challenge. But, over the years, scientist have come up with methods that enable accurate estimates. For example, with orangutan their nests are counted and with gibbons, it is their songs that are recorded and used.

Bornean orangutan by Ian Wood.

Bornean orangutan by Ian Wood.

We are trying to find out more about the wild ape populations of the Belantikan Hulu region which is part of the greater Belantikan Arut – a spectacular landscape spanning 500,000 hectares across Central and West Kalimantan (Indonesian Borneo). The Belantikan Conservation Programme (BCP) is a joint initiative of Yayorin (an Indonesian NGO) and ourselves.

The Belanitkan Hulu comprises primary and secondary lowland forests, including both recently logged forests and post-logging forests that have since recovered (over the last 35-40 years). The area has ravines, rivers, cliffs and logging roads – all synonymous with Borneo.

There is a large wild orangutan population, which was first surveyed in 2003, and a gibbon population, whose size is unknown. In 2012, The Rufford Foundation awarded funding to the BCP to build a small research station and to commence surveys of the ape species. The research station is now in use by BCP’s field researchers and by a team of biologists from the National University of Jakarta.

Our initial surveys indicate there has been a continuing decrease in the orangutan population over the years. This population was estimated to be the largest population of orangutans existing in the wild outside of the protected area system. In fact, more than 70% of the total Bornean orangutan population in the wild is found outside of designated conservation areas. Hence, it is important to determine the size and distribution of the Belantikan population accurately, and to be able to monitor the current apparent population decline, so that appropriate conservation actions can be taken.

The gibbon survey estimated a density of just over 3 groups per km2, which is considered high. The BCP will conduct further research to determine how orangutans adapt to living in logging forests and to the varying degrees of disturbance. Further studies on gibbons will also survey the wider area and the estimated territory and cruising areas, study group composition as well as changes in habitat conditions between seasons.

We hope to provide you with new and exciting findings from Belantikan as we start to find out more about its forests and what lives within.

We are extremely grateful to The Rufford Foundation and to the US Fish and Wildlife Service Great Ape Conservation Fund for supporting this research project, and to the Arcus Foundation for supporting the on-going conservation project.

Thank you,

Orangutan Foundation and Yayorin (Belantikan Conservation Programme)

 

Another wild adult male orangutan rescued

Our Orangutan Veterinary and Rescue Team managed to rescue another wild orangutan yesterday from the village of  Pendulangan, which is close to the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia Borneo.

Wild male orangutan at top of tree

We were already aware of the presence of the adult male orangutan because the village had seen it hanging around, stealing fruit from their trees and on one occasion it even wandered into the village’s kindergarten.  Fortunately, we have a good relationship with the village and we worked with them to try to live side by side with the orangutan. However, it became clear the orangutan was becoming more troublesome and the villagers could no longer tolerate the situation.

Weighing sedated orangutan before transfer to cage

The orangutan proved tricky to capture as he climbed up into the tree tops. It was made more complicated because he was so close to the village – we had to avoid injury to both ape and humans.  Eventually, he was darted and after being weighed he was taken directly to the offices of BKSDA. Our vet, Dr Fikri, is examining him today and all being well hopefully he can be translocated to the Reserve in the next day or so.

Back at BKSDA office where orangutan will be examined

We will keep you updated on his progress.

Thank you,

Orangutan Foundation

It’s Orangutan Awareness Week! Show your support by becoming a member or by making a donation.

More orangutans need rescuing

We are sad to report that the pregnant female orangutan, who had been chained up by her foot, has not survived. Worryingly, the same plantation have another 20 to 30 orangutans in need of rescue. See earlier blog Worrying trend – another orangutan rescued.

The orangutan’s forest habitat should not have been cleared in the first place – they are an endangered species and protected by law. If clearing goes ahead a large enough area for the orangutans to live in should have been set aside. However, it seems there is only remnant forest surrounded by oil palm and with villages close by. The orangutans have no where to go.
We are in discussion with BKSDA (The Government Agency for Natural Resources) to find the best possible solution.  We have a rescue team in the field and we will do our utmost to save these orangutans. Rescues and translocations are costly in terms of staff time, logisitics and veterinary equipment and also the follow up care involved and not to mention ongoing habitat protection. Please support our crucial work.  You can donate via our secure online shop or via justgiving or by calling 0044(0)20 7724 2912.
More to follow soon.
Thank you.

Two adult male Bornean orangutans rescued in one week

Since January we have been receiving an increasing number of requests to rescue wild orangutans and move them to the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve, Indonesian Borneo.  Within the last week we have rescued 2 adult male orangutans. These rescues not only demand extra staff time but are expensive and present a challenge especially at a time when we are having to make major cut backs in the UK and some in the field.

The first orangutan was reported in a community-owned plantation in Mendawai Seberang.  The owner said that the orangutan who was wandering round his plantation was a male. The Foundation team visited the plantation, which is a mixture of rubber, pineapple and oil palm.

Mixed Crop Plantation – the dominant vegetation is rubber and pineapple

In the rubber trees old and new orangutan nests were seen.

Orangutan nests found in the rubber trees

There was also the visible remnants of crop damage for example pineapple fruits that had been eaten by the orangutan. After a few hours of trying to find the orangutans, the team gave up.

Pineapple Fruit eaten by orangutan

About 5 days later the plantation owner telephoned us again because the orangutan was still causing damage to his crops.  Our team left for the plantation immediately and found the large adult male.

 

Orangutan in tree

Dr Fikri, our vet began preparing the anesthesia which he  administered by using a blowpipe, which was generously funded by Colchester Zoo’s Action for the Wild.

Drug Preparation

The orangutan was successfully darted first time.

Photos above: orangutan has been sedated

Weighing  and medical examination of orangutan

Orangutan in the Cage

After conducting health checks to ensure that no injury had occurred he was put into the cage. All rescued animals must be taken to the BKSDA (wildlife department) office.

Orangutan taken from the Plantation

Orangutan transfer to kelotok 

Orangutan at the BKSDA Office

The orangutan stayed overnight at BKSDA and the next day was taken to the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve.

Orangutan in Move to Kelotok

Last Friday, 11th May, the male was released into the Reserve. This involved having to transfer the 65 kg orangutan from the pick-up truck into a Kelotok (motorised canoe).  The river levels in the reserve were extremely low so it was decided that the orangutan should be released from the canoe rather than trying to lift the cage out and carrying to the forest.  As soon as the cage was opened the wild orangutan climbed straight out and up into the tree and moved off into the forest.

Orangutan in tree

Orangutan free in the trees

The second rescue occurred 2 days ago from an oil palm plantation near the village of Amin Jaya. It was another adult male, about 15 years old.  More details and photos to follow shortly.

Thank you for your continued support and thank you Carol Ritchie for you lovely email!

Orangutan Foundation

 

 

 

 

 







 

RELEASE ORANGUTAN

Photo 23. Orangutan From the BKSDA Office to the Karang Anyar

Photo 24. Orangutan in Move to Kelotok

Photo 25. Orangutan in Release I

Photo 26. Orangutan in Release II

Photo 27. Orangutan in the Trees I

Photo 28. Orangutan in the Trees II

Sunda clouded leopard cub rescued

On Saturday April 28, we received information from our partners, Yayorin, that there was a baby Bornean clouded leopard,  or Sunda clouded leopard as it is now known (Neofelis diardi), which had been hit by a car in the village of Bayat, district of Belantikan Raya, Lamandau regency in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.

The Orangutan Foundation team left the port town of Pangkalan Bun late morning and arrived at the village of Bayat four hours later. After some discussion with the villagers we saw the leopard cub which was being stored in a cardboard box and was silent and motionless.

 Dr Fikri, the Orangutan Foundation’s vet, examining the cub being held by villagers

Information obtained from the villagers was that leopard cub was found at night on the road leading to the iron ore mining site.  They saw the mother clouded leopard walking across the road carrying her cub in her mouth.  When the iron ore vehicles passed they must have startled the mother who dropped her cub and ran away.  It is thought that the vehicle hit the cub, though very lightly.  The iron ore mining vehicles were heading to the port of Pangkalan Bun.

The people of Bayat village had been looking after the cub for 2 days before we arrived.

Orangutan Foundation vet with the cub


Baby clouded leopard weak and silent


Cub not able to walk

 

The good news is that the cub is progressing well and is in pretty good health. Initially it was always unsteady when standing and its walking wasn’t normal.  It had problems with both hind legs. This pain seems to have now gone and its walking is normal and sometimes it even climbs the wall of its cage.

Cub alert and seems healthy

 

It is eating and drinking. Its current weight is ± 2 Kg. Looking at the husbandry manual on the Clouded Leopard Project website this suggests its age may be between 60 and 90 days old.  It is still very early days for the cub.  More news to follow soon…

Thank you

Orangutan Foundation

Please consider a donation to support our work by visiting our website or bid on a Gary Hodge’s print that is being auction in aid of the Foundation. Thank you!

 


Save the Tripa Peat Swamp forests and its critically endangered orangutans

Aceh Judge slammed over Indonesian court’s inability to make a just ruling over simple legal case.

Read full press release here and sign an online petition to enforce the law protecting Tripa Peat Swamp and its orangutan populations.

Please support this important action.

Thank you,

Orangutan Foundation