Orangutan Translocation & Release

Orangutan Translocation & Release

A growing challenge, which we face, is the increasing numbers of orangutans that are found isolated in remnant patches of forests or in oil palm plantations. This endangered great ape’s struggle to exist will only get harder as habitat continues to be destroyed.




Mitigation of human - orangutan conflicts

The Orangutan Foundation project, Mitigation of Human - Orangutan Conflicts in western Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo is an awareness campaign and is expected to bring about a reduction in the number of cases of orangutans that need to be rescued because their lives are in imminent danger. It will target local communities and industrial practices, especially oil palm plantations. The project is being implemented in collaboration with Yayorin (the Indonesian Orangutan Foundation) and the Central Government agency BKSDA-Kalteng (the Bureau for Conservation of Natural Resources for Central Kalimantan).


Orangutan Releases

The Orangutan Foundation has been supporting the orangutan reintroduction programme in the protected Lamandau Wildlife Reserve since 2000. It is one of the few places in Indonesia where translocated and rescued orangutans can be released in the wild. A veterinary clinic has been established at Camp Gemini, one of the six orangutan release camps in the reserve.

All the orangutans that are rescued and released are treated for parasitic worm infections and are given a full health check to minimise the risk of disease transmission to the wild.

Some orangutans, like the one pictured below require veterinary treatment. Having a vet and facilities in the field allows for the monitoring and, if necessary, treatment of the orangutans in situ, which helps reduce stress and suffering.

Darted and removed from oil palm plantation to safety


When orangutans are too young to be released they go into a ‘soft release’ programme. This involves the apes being taken out into the forest in the daytime. An Orangutan Foundation assistant will keep a watchful eye on the young ape, introducing foods, such as bark, fruit and termites.

All of our procedures follow the reintroduction guidelines for the release of orangutans into the wild.

Rescuing, caring for and releasing orangutans is a long-term commitment as is safeguarding the future of the Wildlife Reserve. With key stakeholders we are working on a comprehensive programme that incorporates community awareness and sustainable livelihood initiatives, reforestation, protection with guard posts and regular patrols and stakeholder co-operative management.


Watch footage of the Orangutan Foundation’s veterinary team successfully releasing another orangutan back into the forest of the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve. Found tied up 3 weeks ago this 7 year old female is now living back in the forest, where she belongs. 

Successful Orangutan Release


Read our blog to find out more about orangutan translocations and to follow the stories of individual orangutan rescues.


Orangutan Conservation

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