Samboja Lestari Update - What Have The Volunteers Been Doing?

Samboja Lestari Update - What Have The Volunteers Been Doing?

Posted by Connor Whelan on 26th Aug 2016

As always, our volunteers on the Samboja Lestari Orangutan Project over in Borneo have been working extremely hard, and our project facilitator Kate has given us an update on what they have been doing!

Borneo Wood

This month, the volunteers have been working on one the of the new orangutan islands to make it habitable for the adult apes. Volunteers have been put to work collecting old hardwood from the forest to erect on the island. These large pieces of wood will be kept in the ground with concrete to stop the boisterous orangutans from damaging them, and then have ropes and hammocks attached to let the apes swing freely! The hammocks have been made by the volunteers, so it is a good test of their building skills to see if their hard work can stand up to the might of some adventurous orangutans!

Tree Planting

Work has also begun on the islands which are going to be used by the orangutans in the future. Volunteers and staff have been planting saplings in the tree nursery which, after being given a little head start in a safe orangutan-free area, will be placed onto the islands to grow.

Borneo Orangutan Conservation

With the intention being to have six islands up and running in the near future, there is still a lot of work for volunteers to do at the project site. Over the next three months, the project hopes to have completed three of the currently uninhabited sites. This will involve building new platforms, erecting ironwood, and doing a general makeover of the islands so that the orangutans have more exciting places to climb and explore!

Borneo Rainforest

In the New Year, the hope is to start work on the islands which are currently inhabited by orangutans. Since the apes are strong (a male orangutan is seven times stronger than a male human!), they can often damage their surroundings no matter how deeply they are concreted in, so every few years a refurbishment is needed. By improving and changing the various poles and hammocks on the islands, the orangutan will remain stimulated and continue their progression towards their eventual release back into the Bornean rainforest.

Volunteers are a crucial part in the work that goes on at Samboja - without them, progress would simply not be possible. If you would like to contribute to the future of these incredible animals, you can learn a little more about the Samboja Lestari Orangutan Project on our website!


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