Orangutan rehabilitation rules:
Additional rules for captive orangutans waiting re-introduction:
- Briefing: all volunteers must attend and be thoroughly briefed on the species and the risks involved with the work before entering the site. They must be fully aware as to why it is so essential they keep to the rules and regulations set out for The Great Projects by the Institute of Primate Tourism in the UK. An in depth, detailed presentation explaining how orangutans are being affected by current ecotourism practices and the necessity for change in these practises will be given by an expert.
- Health Check: All volunteers must complete a questionnaire regarding their current state of health, highlighting any symptoms of common diseases.
- No Contact: Absolutely no touching of the animals is allowed at any time.
- Food Sharing: Volunteers must never share food items with the orangutans.
- Disinfection: Before entering the rehabilitation centre, it is essential that all volunteers must be disinfected and sterilised. This includes hands and shoes.
- Facemasks: To avoid contamination as much as possible, facemasks must be carried at all times and worn when in close proximity to the orangutan.
- Enrichment: Every effort must be made to ensure enrichment is geared towards retaining natural behaviour. I.e. nest building, food gathering etc.
- Illness: In the event of a volunteer becoming unwell, they must not come into close proximity with the orangutans until they have fully recovered.
- Harmful Items: Taking potentially harmful objects and materials into the facility housing the orangutans is strictly prohibited. This includes toxic items such as insect repellent, paint, and cleaning products, and sharp items such as tools, jewellery and glass.
- Eating/Drinking: No food or drink to be consumed when in proximity to the orangutans.
- Noise Levels: Noise levels must be kept to a minimum to avoid causing stress to the animals- no shouting/ shrieking.
- Group Size: Maximum group size of 10 volunteers at any one time.
Additional rules for semi-wild orangutan:
- Feeding: Feeding of the orangutans by the volunteers in prohibited.
- Contact: Efforts should be made to avoid even non-physical contact with the orangutans so as to prevent non-natural behaviour repertoire. Human presence should be kept to a minimum to stop excessively habituating the animals. I.e. vocal communication/imitation, clapping etc.
- Distance: Volunteers should strive to keep as large a distance as possible between themselves and the orangutans in captivity.
Additional rules for fully-wild orangutan:
- Distance: Volunteers should always adhere to the IUCN guidelines of 20 meters distance between themselves and the orangutan.
- Personal Belongings: No possessions are to be taken into the orangutan environment.
- No Noise: Voices and speaking are to be kept to a minimum.
- Photography: Flash photography, zoom lenses over 30cm, tripod stands and umbrellas are strictly prohibited.
- No Stalking Wild Orangutan: Orangutans will normally move away upon realisation of human presence. Under no circumstances must volunteers follow or stalk the fleeing animal.
- No Fires: Cold camping only.
- Litter: All litter must be taken back to the site and disposed of correctly.
- Trees: No felling of trees.
- Other Practises: Follow all best practices to minimise negative effects in rainforest and its inhabitants. For example; dig a hole and bury faeces, never take anything from the forest home and always be vigilant of the surrounding wildlife.
Please click here for the full information on no animal contact at Matang.