An Update From The Samboja Lestari Orangutan Project - One Island Has Been Finished And The Baby Orangutans Are Learning!

An Update From The Samboja Lestari Orangutan Project - One Island Has Been Finished And The Baby Orangutans Are Learning!

Posted by Michael Starbuck on Oct 31, 2017

To really get our Orangutan celebrations off to a good start this month, we are delighted to bring you all an update from the Samboja Lestari Orangutan Volunteer Project! We’ve spoken to Kate, the Volunteer Coordinator, and she has told us all about the work the volunteers have been doing over in Borneo. Let’s take a look!

It’s Hard Work On The Islands!

Over the last month or so we have been hard at work preparing an island for our resident big male orangutan Papa. He will soon be moving onto the island with some other female orangutans, and a lot of work needed to be done for their arrival!

Orangutan Rehabilitation in Borneo

The island was lacking any sufficient climbing structures, shelter and sleeping areas due to its previous orangutan inhabitants and their slightly destructive behaviour! These orangutans may have been released out into the wild, but not before leaving us a lot of work to do!

Volunteers working at an Orangutan Sanctuary

Through a lot of hard work we managed to:

  • Construct 3 platforms from concrete to provide shelter for Papa and his female friends
  • Erect 21 climbing poles that will give the orangutans the perfect opportunity to spend their time up high
  • Make hammocks which not only act as a form of enrichment but also a fantastic place for the orangutans to rest

Orangutan Island at Samboja Lestari

Now all that is left to do is to help the keepers put the finishing touches on the island and it will be ready for its orangutan inhabitants! This has been one of the hardest islands to fix by far, so we were all very proud when we finished the last structure!

Complete Orangutan Island

Progress Is Being Made At The Baby House Too!

There are only 2 residents in the baby house now, Ames and Divine. Davine, who has previously not progressed as quickly as other young orangutans have, has finally started to show some signs that she is improving! She is beginning to climb up to heights above 2 meters where 1 month ago this would have been inconceivable due to her lack of confidence. This is great news for everyone at the project!

As for Ames, he is getting very confident now and more often than not you can find him right at the top of the trees surrounding baby school.

Both young apes are progressing well and we can’t wait to see what the future holds for them!

A big thank you goes out to all of the hard working volunteers we have had over the last month, as without you all this work would not have been possible!

Thanks to Kate for sending over this exciting update, and keep your eyes peeled for more news from Samboja!


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