Saltwater crocodile and kite translocated to safety

Here is a blog post by Azhari Purbatrapsila, the Orangutan Foundation’s Reintroduction Manager. But, as you will see, it is not just orangutans that the Orangutan Foundation rescue and release.

On 12 January 2017, I and Jakir (Forest Patrol Manager)  translocated one saltwater crocodile and one black-winged kite to the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo. Translocation was done together with SKW II BKSDA Kalteng (Indonesian Nature Conservation Agency). The crocodile is about 1 meter in length and is in a healthy condition.

Release of 1m saltwater crocodile into the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Central Kalimantan, Borneo. © Orangutan Foundation

Unlike the crocodile, the kite was not in a good condition. It looks like the kite was kept in a small cage so its wings are really weak. Although its wing are full (no missing feathers), some of the feathers are not in good shape. The kite and the crocodile were handed over from the community.

Rescued black-winged kite in holding cage prior to release. © Orangutan Foundation

After confirmation of the translocation, we left the Orangutan Foundation office at 10am and went to the BKSDA office to pick up BKSDA staff and the animals. We drove to the speedboat jetty and went directly by boat to Camp Buluh, within the Reserve.

Firstly, we released the crocodile,  which swam away from us before it dived into the river and wasn’t seen again.

Translocated saltwater crocodile swimming off just before it dived down out of sight. © Orangutan Foundation

After, we released the kite onto a tree which is usually used by soft-release orangutans who are learning to climb.

Placing the black-winged kite into a tree for its release. © Orangutan Foundation

Black-winged kite in tree just after release. © Orangutan Foundation

After several minutes of staying on the branch, the kite tried to fly. Unfortunately, the kite unable to fly properly and it fell into the swamp water next to the camp building.

Black-winged kite fallen into swamp as it was too weak to fly. © Orangutan Foundation

The kite was rescued from the swamp water. © Orangutan Foundation

We decided to put the kite in an empty orangutan enclosure and let the camp staff take care of it until its healthy and strong enough and can fly. Hopefully the kite’s condition will improve quickly so it can be released and be wild again. We will keep you updated.

Thank you,

Azhari

Orangutan Foundation

 

Miners evicted from Wildlife Reserve in Borneo

Protecting the habitat of the critically endangered orangutan is our number one priority but also our biggest ongoing challenge – we have to prevent illegal activity. Last month, illegal gold and zircon miners were evicted from the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.  This Wildlife Reserve provides a second chance of survival for orangutans that have been rescued from oil palm plantations or other areas where they are a risk.

Mining equipment being confiscated from illegal mining in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve. © Orangutan Foundation

To protect the Reserve, Orangutan Foundation have built eight guard posts from which regular forest and river patrols are launched in collaboration with the Indonesian Nature Conservation Agency (BKSDA). It is a huge undertaking keeping the Reserve (64,000 hectares) free from illegal activity.

Critically endangered Bornean orangutan. Bangkal was released into the reserve. It is vital we protect his habitat. © Orangutan Foundation

Illegal mining was first detected months ago, by the Orangutan Foundation’s forest patrol teams. Frustratingly, we do not have the authority to evict or stop the miners but can only inform them that they are acting illegally and gather evidence to report to BKSDA.  To evict the miners and their equipment, the Forestry Police and Indonesian military are involved.

Forestry police and military involved in the eviction of illegal miners from Lamandau Wildlife Reserve © Orangutan Foundation

Confiscation of illegal mining equipment. Also, shows the devastating impact of mining on the forest ecosystem. © Orangutan Foundation

Thankfully the miners and their equipment are now gone. We remain vigilant and will try to prevent the miners starting up again.The mining process devastates the forest ecosystem, destroying orangutan habitat.  If the Orangutan Foundation stopped actively protecting the Reserve then its precious wildlife and this globally important ecosystem, with huge stores of carbon, would very likely be destroyed and lost. Please help us to keep the forest protected. Click here to donate.

Thank you.

Orangutan Foundation

Orangutan Foundation: 2016 in pictures and numbers. A huge thank you for your support.

6,000 wild Bornean orangutans live in the Belantikan region. The largest population outside of a protected area. Orangutan Foundation actively engages key stakeholders to conserve this critical tropical forest ecosystem.
 
The Belantikan Forest.

The Belantikan Forest.


33 wild orangutans rescued. One particularly poignant rescue was Narti, who was found completely stranded, clinging to the burnt remnants of a tree surrounded by oil palms.

Narti was found completely stranded.

Narti was found completely stranded.

 
36 rescues of other wildlife species. All released into the safety of the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve.

A Brahminy Kite rescued by the Foundation.

A Brahminy Kite rescued by the Foundation.

        

A sunbear pictured shortly after release.

A sunbear pictured shortly after release.

 

A slow loris rescued by Foundation staff.

A slow loris rescued by Foundation staff.

 

16,000 Ubar tree seedlings nurtured and planted to restore areas of the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve damaged by forest fires in 2015.

A nursery worker tending to seedlings.

A nursery worker tending to seedlings.

 
One new patron. Patrick Aryee and Offspring Films visited our work in Borneo to film for “Monkeys: An Amazing Animal Family”, a three-part series which first aired on Sky 1, on Christmas day. Star of the show, was Okto who was charmed by Patrick’s presenting skills!

Okto, our adoption star!

Okto, our adoption star!

 

Foundation Director Ashley Leiman with Orangutan Foundation Patron Patrick Aryee.

Foundation Director Ashley Leiman with Orangutan Foundation Patron Patrick Aryee.

 

Eight volunteers and one new guard post. In July, the construction of Guard Post 25 began. Now up and running, this guard post is critical for the protection of the new 8,000 hectare extension of the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve.

2016 Volunteers.

2016 Volunteers.


The newly completed guard post 25.

The newly completed Guard Post 25.


Our 25th anniversary year saw the opening of Tanjung Harapan’s Information Centre, in Tanjung Tanjung Puting National Park. Renovated by our 2015 volunteers and designed by the Cube in Residence Programme.

Cutting the ribbon to mark the opening of the Information Centre.

Cutting the ribbon to mark the opening of the Information Centre.

 

Orangutan Foundation Director Ashley Leiman with the administrative head of Tanjung Puting National Park.

Orangutan Foundation Director Ashley Leiman with the administrative head of Tanjung Puting National Park.

 

Visitors taking in the exhibits in the Information Centre

Visitors taking in the exhibits in the Information Centre

104 air rifle pellets were found in lodged in orangutan Aan, 32 of which in her head left her blind, in 2012. In October 2016, ophthalmic surgeon, Claudia Hartley, visited Aan to assess the permanence of her blindness. 
 
Aan, found blinded by air rifle pellets.

Aan, found blinded by air rifle pellets.

What a wonderful start to 2017 to have the chance to restore Aan’s sight. Claudia Hartley will be returning the to field with her team and specialist equipment in February to remove a cataract, currently affecting Aan’s vision in her one remaining eye.
DONATE NOW to help us to raise £2000 to fund this vital operation to give Aan a second chance in the wild.


2016 – the highest number of orangutans rescued

As 2016 comes to an end, we have received news of yet another orangutan rescued from an oil-palm plantation – read our vet’s blogpost below. Please support our vital work protecting orangutans and their globally important habitat – donate here

Yesterday we attended a meeting with BKSDA (Indonesian Nature Conservation Agency). Whilst we were there Pak Agung, the head officer, received a call from an oil-palm plantation, in the Sampit area, to rescue an orangutan. The Orangutan Foundation’s rescue team immediately jumped into action to respond to the rescue call.

After a 4 hour journey we arrived at the location and were immediately met by the authorities from the plantation office, who directed us to the orangutan. We found the orangutan in a tree. We used a tranquilliser gun and once anaesthetised, the orangutan was identified as female, around 16 years old and her weight is around 30 Kg.

Wild female Bornean orangutan rescued from oil-palm plantation. © Orangutan Foundation

Wild female Bornean orangutan rescued from oil-palm plantation. © Orangutan Foundation

The condition of her body looks thin, maybe because she lacks food. After examining, I give de-worming drug and vitamins to help restore her health. As the orangutan came round after the anaesthetic, her behaviour became very aggressive and she was quite stressed.

Bornean orangutan being transported from oil-palm plantation. © Orangutan Foundation

Bornean orangutan being transported from oil-palm plantation. © Orangutan Foundation

She will be translocated to the protected Lamandau Wildlife Reserve in the next few days, where she will be released back into the wild as soon as possible.

Thank you,

Steven – Orangutan Foundation Vet

Brahminy kites, Bornean sun bears and orangutans…

Blogpost by Steven Daud, Orangutan Foundation vet, in Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo.

Yesterday, 14 December 2016, we go by speedboat to the Camp Siswoyo and Camp Buluh, in Lamandu Wildlife Reserve, as part of our regular visits.  First, we stopped at the Post Teringin Lama to check on a Brahminy kite, named Jack. He was obtained from citizens in Sampit. Jack came to us with many missing wing feathers so Jack cannot fly far away.

Jack, the brahminy kite, has started to fly short distances and now roosts in the trees.

Jack, the brahminy kite, has started to fly short distances and now roosts in the trees. © Orangutan Foundation

Because of that, we decided to put Jack at Guard Post Teringin Lama and the staff at the Post have responsibility of taking care of Jack. At first, Jack only at around the Post jetty, but now Jack seen already getting used to roost in the forest near the Post.

After Post Teringin Lama, we went to Release Camp Siswoyo for checking the latest condition of Bruno and Satria. Bruno is a Bornean sun bear and already in Camp Siswoyo since October and seemed to have a skin problem, but due to treatment it’s much better.

Bornean sun bear, Bruno

Bornean sun bear, Bruno. © Orangutan Foundation

Satria is an orangutan undergoing soft release. Rescued in June and is about 2 and ½ years old and he is in a healthy condition and doing well. To stop infection by the parasite, I give anti-parasitic drugs to prevent transmission of disease, which I suspect comes from Bearded Pig.

Young Bornean male orangutan

Young Bornean male orangutan. © Orangutan Foundation

 

Here is a video of two other young orangutans, Jessica and Timtom, in our soft-release programme, made by Azhari, our Orangutan Reintroduction manager.

 

Thank you,

Steven – Orangutan Foundation vet

Please support our work in returning these critically endangered orangutans and other wildlife species back to the wild, where they belong. Click to donate.

Thank you.

 

 

Wonderful images of young Bornean orangutans learning to survive in the wild

Here’s another field update, with some wonderful images, from Orangutan Foundation vet Steven Daud, on some of the younger orangutans in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Indonesian Borneo.  

A couple of days ago, we made our routine health and monitoring visits to Camp Rasak and Camp JL, two orangutan release camps, within the Wildlife Reserve. This journey is by speedboat as the camps can only be accessed by river.

Our first stop was Camp Rasak, where orangutans Jessica, Timtom and Endut live. These orangutans are on a soft-release programme.

Young rescued Bornean orangutans Timtom and Endut, being taken out of their enclosure to play in the forest. © Orangutan Foundation

Young rescued Bornean orangutans Timtom and Endut, being taken out of their enclosure to play in the forest. © Orangutan Foundation

We took Jessica, Timtom and Endut out from their enclosure so they can learn to make a nest and play in the trees. Jessica’s ability to make the nest is clearly visible. While Timtom and Endut are seen to be very brave exploring the trees, where they hone their skills of survival.

Every-which-way hips. Timtom making use of her arboreal adaptations! © Orangutan Foundation

Every-which-way hips. Timtom making use of her arboreal adaptations! © Orangutan Foundation

Young Bornean orangutan, Endut, learning to survive in the wild. © Orangutan Foundation

Young Bornean orangutan, Endut, learning to survive in the wild. © Orangutan Foundation

Young Bornean orangutan, Jessica. December 2016. © Orangutan Foundation

Young Bornean orangutan, Jessica. December 2016. © Orangutan Foundation

Nowadays, the weather is unpredictable which has caused Timtom to catch a cold. We are giving Timtom vitamin supplements and medication to help her get healthy again.

Timtom, young Bornean orangutan receiving treatment for a cold. © Orangutan Foundation

Timtom, young Bornean orangutan receiving treatment for a cold. © Orangutan Foundation

After Camp Rasak we got back into the speedboat and went to camp JL to monitor Okto and Ketty.  Before orangutans can be fully released back into the wild they must be able to make a nest to sleep in. Ketty has shown that she can make a nest. However, Okto still has difficulty with this skill and sometimes even tries to interrupt Ketty’s nest-building.

Young Bornean orangutan, Ketty. Learning to survive in the wild. © Orangutan Foundation

Young Bornean orangutan, Ketty. Learning to survive in the wild. © Orangutan Foundation

Vet with young Bornean orangutan, Okto. December 2016. © Orangutan Foundation

Vet with young Bornean orangutan, Okto. December 2016. © Orangutan Foundation

Bornean orangutan, Okto, playing in the trees.© Orangutan Foundation

Bornean orangutan, Okto, playing in the trees.© Orangutan Foundation

 

Orangutan Foundation vet treating Okto and Ketty.  © Orangutan Foundation

Orangutan Foundation vet treating Okto and Ketty. © Orangutan Foundation

In terms of health, Okto and Ketty are both in good condition and this is maintained by giving them vitamin supplements. To minimise disease transmission between the orangutans and humans, staff in contact with the orangutans must wear gloves and masks.

I hope you enjoy the photos.

Regards,

Steven (Orangutan Foundation Vet)

As always, we are immensely grateful to the Orangutan Foundation staff in Indonesia for their hard work and commitment. You can support this work by Adopting Okto (a unique Christmas present of real value) by visiting our online shop. There are plenty of other wonderful Christmas present ideas too.  Last day for ordering before Christmas is Friday 16th December.  Thank you.

Orangutan Foundation vet – infant orangutan’s inflamed air sacs

Blogpost by Dr Steven, the Orangutan Foundation’s vet.

I went to Camp Rasak, in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve (Indonesian Borneo) to check the condition of infant orangutan Ariel. Camp staff were concerned and had reported seeing Ariel with enlarged air sacs around his throat.  Ariel is Acuy’s son and aged about 22 months.

Infant Bornean orangutan Ariel, showing the inflamed air sacs around his throat.

Infant Bornean orangutan Ariel, showing the inflamed air sacs around his throat.

We arrived by speedboat and immediately began our search for Acuy and Ariel.

Adult female orangutan Acuy with infant Ariel and their 'adopted' orangutan companion, Kotim.

Adult female orangutan Acuy with infant Ariel and their ‘adopted’ orangutan companion, Kotim.

 

 

Dr Steven preparing the anaesthetic .

Dr Steven preparing the anaesthetic .

Once located we had to first anaesthetise Acuy, using a blowpipe and anaesthetic dart. After Acuy was sedated, Camp staff helped hold Ariel so he could be further examined.

Darting adult female orangutan Acuy in order to examine her son, Ariel.

Darting adult female orangutan Acuy in order to examine her son, Ariel.

I give a with very low dose of anaesthetic to Ariel because he was stressed. After Ariel calmed, I start taking samples in the neck area. It turns out there’s no fluid, which indicates the absence of bacterial infection and it only contained air.

Examining and treating infant Borneo orangutan, Ariel.

Examining and treating infant Borneo orangutan, Ariel.

After that, I take blood samples, give vitamin injection and de-worming drugs to Ariel and Acuy.

Treating adult Bornean orangutan, Acuy with de-worming medication.

Treating adult Bornean orangutan, Acuy with de-worming medication.

Monitoring is conducted periodically and on a recent routine visit to Camp Rasak I was pleased to see Ariel already doesn’t have any enlargement of air sacs around the neck.

Acuy and Ariel, fit and well. With Kotim, a 5-year-old orangutan who was released in April 2016.

Acuy and Ariel, fit and well. With Kotim, a 5-year-old orangutan who was released in April 2016.

Mother and son (and their companion Kotim, who was released in April 2016, and seems to like hanging around with them) fit and healthy.

Thank you.

Join the Orangutan Foundation to support this work or adopt Okto, one of our orphaned orangutans.

 

Second chance for blind orangutan

A blind Bornean orangutan, who was rescued from an oil-palm plantation, may have her sight restored and live in the wild again. The Orangutan Foundation have been caring for the orangutan, named Aan, since 2012 when she was found with 104 air rifle pellets in her, 37 lodged in her head. A three-hour operation removed 32 of the pellets but she was left blind which meant she couldn’t be returned to the wild.

Blind Bornean orangutan, named Aan, is currently blind in both eyes.

Blind Bornean orangutan, named Aan, is currently blind in both eyes.

An ophthalmic surgeon, Claudia Hartley, visited Aan to assess the permanence of her blindness.  On examination, the ophthalmologist discovered there is a very high chance of restoring sight to one of Aan’s eyes.

Ophthalmic surgeon examining Bornean orangutan's eye

Ophthalmic surgeon examining Bornean orangutan’s eye

 

 

Ophthalmic surgeon, Claudia Hartley, examines Aan's eye.

Ophthalmic surgeon, Claudia Hartley, examines Aan’s eye.

Claudia Hartley will return to Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo, with colleagues and specialist equipment in February 2017. They will operate to remove a cataract and, if successful, Aan will be returned to the wild, despite still being blind in one eye.

X-ray taken in 2012 of Bornean orangutan, Aan's skull, showing pellets.

X-ray taken in 2012 of Bornean orangutan, Aan’s skull, showing pellets.

Aan is currently living in a purpose-built enclosure in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, which is where she will also hopefully begin her transition to living wild again.

Blind Bornean orangutan, Aan, in her enclosure, in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Borneo

Blind Bornean orangutan, Aan, in her enclosure, in the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve, Borneo

 

The Orangutan Foundation actively protect the forests and precious wildlife within with guard posts and river patrols. This year, an extension to the Reserve was agreed by the Indonesian Government, adding an area the size of Guernsey to the protected forests. At a time when orangutans are critically endangered, due to habitat loss, this is a conservation success story.

Support the Orangutan Foundation and have your donation doubled through the Big Give Christmas Challenge from midday Tuesday 29 November to midday Friday 2 December https://secure.thebiggive.org.uk/project/futurefororangutans

Thank you,

Orangutan Foundation

 

A big thank you from Borneo

Orangutan Foundation staff have sent a thank you message from Borneo to all those who helped to raise awareness and funds during Orangutan Awareness Week.

thank-you-oaw-2

A thank you message from Orangutan Foundation staff in Indonesia.

In particular, thank you to All Things Wild, who ran a Primate Week and hosted a talk by Cathy Smith from Orangutan Foundation. After the talk Cathy said “it was wonderful to meet people who had been out to visit or volunteer for the Orangutan Foundation in Borneo but it was also great to talk to many new and interested people, who turned out on a cold and wet November evening!”.

Rickshaw Travel helping to raise awareness and funds for orangutan Foundation.

Rickshaw Travel helping to raise awareness and funds for orangutan Foundation.

Thanks also to Rickshaw Travel for raising awareness all week and organising their own ginger bake off in aid of the Orangutan Foundation. Thanks to Sunnyside Primary School for going orange and to our dedicated member Steph Brown for her chocolate fundraiser.

The deadline has now passed for the Great Orangutan Bake Off #GOBO competition but thanks to those who entered. We will reveal the star bakers once our judges, Patrick Aryee and Ian Cumming have made their decisions!

Finally, save the dates!  29 November to 2 December. Your donations will be doubled through the Big Give Christmas Challenge and will help us to protect orangutan habitat.

Thank you!

Orangutan Foundation

The Situation Worsens

kolam2

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.

kilometer-12

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.

Kolam was darted with a sedative during the rescue.

Kolam was darted with a sedative during the rescue.

Orangutan Foundation staff translocated Kolam whilst sedated.

Orangutan Foundation staff translocated Kolam whilst sedated.

Once anaesthetized, the rescue team had to carry the heavy orangutan through difficult terrain.

Once anaesthetized, the rescue team had to carry the heavy orangutan through difficult terrain.

 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 took immediately to the trees upon release.

Kolam took immediately to the trees upon release.

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 help the Foundation with our ever-growing need for more facilities to care for rescued orangutans.