Tag Archives: Borneo

The Situation Worsens

 

Kolam was found stranded by the roadside.

Kolam was found stranded by the roadside.

The Orangutan Foundation recently learned news of yet another orangutan found stranded with nowhere to go. Kolam, a male of around 10 years of age, is the ninth orangutan to have been found by the same stretch of road, built in the past few years to connect two towns. Before this road was built the only way to get to and from these towns was by boat, consequently people can now access areas of land they couldn’t before.

The road where many orangutans have become stranded.

The road where many orangutans have become stranded.

 

Kolam’s nest can be seen in the tree, with the road in the foreground.

Kolam’s nest can be seen in the tree, with the road in the foreground.

 The forest which once stood is being cleared and orangutans, trying to reach a fruiting tree which once grew, are finding themselves stranded, surrounded by roads and villages.

 

Orangutan Foundation staff translocated Kolam whilst sedated.

Orangutan Foundation staff translocated Kolam whilst sedated.

Blood sampling results showed the orangutan to be in good health and free from contagious diseases which meant Kolam was released back into the wild in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Central Kalimantan.

 

Kolam has now been returned to the forest.

Kolam has now been returned to the forest.

Dr. Ade Soeharso, our Program Manager in Indonesia congratulated the hard work of the excellent rescue team.

The rescue team.

The rescue team.

Please consider a donation to support our ever-growing need for more facilities to support rescued orangutans.

(VIDEO) Rawit’s Release

Two days ago the reintroduction team of the Orangutan Foundation successfully released another orangutan back into the forest of the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve where she belongs.

Found tied up in a villager’s backyard just 2 weeks ago, this 5 year old female orangutan known as Rawit is now happily living back in the forest. A previously reintroduced female has taken her under her wing. Visit our blog for the story of her release.

We thank wildlife photographer and Orangutan Foundation supporter Ian Wood for documenting her release. For more information on Ian’s work visit his website http://www.agoodplace.co.uk

The Story of Rawit

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Rawit was found bound tightly to a tree.

Once again we are seeing what happens to orangutans when they are stranded in pockets of forest with oil-palm on one side and villages on the other. On 18th October, a female orangutan of around 4-5 years of age was rescued in Central Kalimantan. This is the story of Rawit, as sent by our vet just a few days ago.

BKSDA (Indonesian Nature Conservation Agency) staff received news from local police that villagers had a young orangutan in their possession that they wished to surrender.

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Foundation staff collaborated with staff from BKSDA and Indonesian conservation organisation Centre for Orangutan Protection (COP) to rescue the orangutan, named Rawit.

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Confiscation of Rawit

 

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Members of BKSDA, COP and local police carried out the confiscation.

When the team arrived to confiscate Rawit, it was noticed immediately that her limbs were very swollen, especially her left wrist, as a result of being tied up.

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Rawit’s limbs were swollen from ropes used to tie her to a tree.

 

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Rawit in transit during the rescue.

Shortly after the rescue, Rawit was placed in the Foundation’s care. After a couple of days of being cared for by our staff, the swelling was significantly reduced and Rawit was able to grasp the side of her cage which she couldn’t before.

 

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Foundation vet carrying out health checks on Rawit.

 

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Rawit is now being cared for by the Orangutan Foundation.

 

Rawit has now joined our soft-release programme within the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve where staff will continue to monitor and support her progress until she is considered ready for release.

To help us provide Rawit and other orangutans on our soft-release programme with the very best care, please consider adopting an orangutan. All proceeds go directly towards supporting the Foundation’s soft-release programme.

A Race for Freedom

We recently received news from the field of a rescue which did not go as planned, but nevertheless resulted in success.

Last week, Orangutan Foundation staff received reports from the local village of Pangkalan Lima of a sun bear trapped in a villager’s well. The smallest of the world’s eight living bear species, the Malayan sun bear?is also the least studied, with little known about its biology or range.

The sun bear was trapped in a well.

The sun bear was trapped in a well.

Our vet first anaesthetised the bear in order for staff to be able to safely remove the bear without injury to either party. A net was used to lift the bear up from the well.

OF staff used a net to lift the bear out of the well

OF staff used a net to lift the bear out of the well

The Foundation vet took blood samples were taken to test for diseases which may have left the bear vulnerable following release. Test results later showed the bear to be in good health.

When managing the rescue and translocation of wild animals there is always a degree of unpredictability as to how the animal itself will react. The bear was placed within a cage whilst still sedated ready for translocation into the forest nearby.

The bear was placed in a cage until release

The bear was placed in a cage whilst sedated.

But after two hours, staff found the bear had escaped! It took a further two hours to successfully recapture the bear from BKSDA grounds, where it was swiftly moved to a stronger cage until its release.

Later that evening it was further transferred to a safer cage overnight, as staff were still worried he could bite his way through the second cage. The bear was clearly very wild and needed to return to the forest, and staff successfully released it the next day in camp Siswoyo in Lamandau Wildlife Reserve.

OF staff raise the door of the cage at the moment of release.

OF staff raise the door of the cage at the moment of release.

Foundation staff are encountering a rise in the number of animals in need of translocation as they come in increasing contact with growing human settlements. Make a donation to ensure the Foundation can continue to keep the surrounding protected areas free from human development so that animals we rescue such as this sun bear have forest to return to.

The sun bear disappeared into the forest immediately following release The sun bear disappeared into the forest immediately following release.

The sun bear disappeared into the forest immediately following release.

Herni – another orangutan rescued and released.

We have just received a report from our reintroduction manager, Azhari, about a recently rescued orangutan.

Herni

Herni is a young female orangutan with a tremendous wild spirit. She was handed over to the Indonesian authorities by a local community, near Sampit (Indonesian Borneo), at the end of June.  Herni was taken to the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, an area which the Orangutan Foundation actively protect with guard posts and patrols.  For three weeks Herni was looked after at Camp Siswoyo, one of six orangutan release camps, in the Reserve.

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Camp staff report that she doesn’t make the tidiest nests to sleep in and sometimes she adds branches to old nests to fix them and make them stronger. As you would expect from an orangutan, she travels well through the trees rarely descending to the forest floor. On the 26th August, the Orangutan Foundation staff decided that Herni was ready for soft release. This means being monitored and followed by the camp staff from dawn to dusk for 20 days.  Not as easy as it sounds!

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Reports so far show that Herni is doing really well, eating the correct foods and following adult females to learn from them what foods to eat. The daily ranging that Herni is doing is between 600m and 1km. The good news is while Herni follows the other orangutans, she rarely goes down to the ground. Sometimes, the staff lost her because she likes to move in the forest canopy, just like an orangutan should, whilst the staff are having to climb over tree roots and wade through swamps. Our staff are experts in the forests and so she doesn’t get lost for long.

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Please consider making a donation to support our ongoing work protecting this important forest reserve and its precious inhabitants.

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Thank you

Orangutan Foundation

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

FIRST IMAGES OF NEWBORN ORANGUTANS IN THE LAMANDAU RIVER WILDLIFE RESERVE, BORNEO

Dr Wawan, our vet, has taken some fantastic photos of two female orangutans with their newborn babies, in the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve, an orangutan release site, in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.

Dr Wawan writes “Female orangutan Amoy was moved from the Orangutan Care Centre and Quarantine (OCCQ) facility, run by Orangutan Foundation International, to the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve ten years ago, in July 2003.  Her infant was sleeping on her neck when we visited Camp Gemini Release Site at the beginning of June. Field staff told us its just two weeks old and is female (is called Alex just in case!). The baby could barely lift its head it was so young. Orangutan Foundation field staff keep an individual book for every orangutan in Lamandau so we could find easily its history, when the first time they were released  and any offspring etc.

The other orangutan is Luxi, she was hanging on to a tree and looking for food with her infant, Luna, attached on her waist. It’s maybe 3 or 4 weeks old, older that Amoy’s baby. Luxi was moved from OCCQ facility to the wildlife reserve in April 2005 and she was also released at Camp Gemini.

Sadly, last year, her first baby disappeared and nobody knew where or why. Now she looks healthy with an new infant and we all hope this baby will survive. We must keep monitoring her, making sure she get the best feeding in order to produce good nutrition for the baby.

On that day we were all fascinated and excited to witness that two orangutans have babies. It is a real evidence that prove it is possible to have a better life by living in the wild.”

Thank you for sharing your wonderful photos Dr Wawan!

Please help us to keep these orangutans and their habitat safe. You can support our work by making a donation here or simply text APES05 £X to 70070 (where X is the amount you would like to donate, e.g. text APES05 £20 to 70070 to donate £20).

Thank you for your support,

Orangutan Foundation

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

Injured orangutan rescued from oil palm plantation

Here is an update from our vet, Dr Wawan, on a young orangutan rescued in April.  Ashley Leiman, the Orangutan Foundation’s director, returned from a visit to Indonesia last week. Ashley managed to get some video footage, of the orangutan having her head stitched, during her visit to the Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve (Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo). We will share this with you shortly but for now, over to Wawan, who has written this post.

‘Melan, she is an orangutan that caught by villagers in an oil palm plantation area in Natai Raya village, close to the town of Pangkalan bun, Kalimantan Tengah Province. BKSDA (Conservation and Natural Resources Authority) rescued her from the village in with the Orangutan Foundation’s help.

Unfortunately she have a big wound in her head, like she has been sliced by knife or any other sharp object. We could see her skull because the wound is wide open, very pity little Orangutan. She is maybe 3 years old female orangutan.

I decide to clean and stitch the wound. I give her anaesthetic and I try to clean the wound with an Iodine solution and make it clearer from her hairs. After 30 minutes she woke up very suddenly. She is put in her cage at BKSDA office. I see the stitching is good enough and I give suggestion to keep watching on her whether she will scratch and or pull the stitches.

 

For a moment she is looks good by not scratch it hard, maybe just a gently touching, and some time she use leaves to cover her head to avoid flies come over. I think it is good and hope she will get well by a week.

Then 8 days after the stitching I saw unexpected thing!

Trying to prise the skin together on a head wound on a young orangutan

The wound become wide open again and wider than before I think. She is in the cage with another Orangutan, I see they were happy keep playing and playing. I suspect because of their playing intensity, they shouldn’t put in the cage together. BKSDA decide to move Melan to Lamandau River Wildlife Reserve, Camp JL. The following day I re-stitched her wound once she was at Camp JL.

I gave her another anaesthetic but his time is was harder as the skin was stronger now and its very hard to pull. But I have one good assistant to help and he keep pulling the skin while I was stitching. That second stitching took 30 minute but looks better and also I give such strong glue with the stitching to make the skin stay together.

Get well soon Melan…We will keep you updated with her progress,

Wawan (Bambang Setyawan)

Orangutan Foundation Vet

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