Orangutan’s are some of the most adorable primates you could see. Native to Sumatra and Borneo, they are under threat from habitat destruction and the animal trade. Thankfully there are places for some of these lost orangutan’s to recover. One such place is Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre.
Sepilok is located in Northern Borneo. Set in protected land with a forested reserve on the edge, it is where orphaned young orangutan’s are brought. The aim is to raise them up, hopefully release them into the reserve, and maybe one day the ultimate goal, releasing them back into the wild.
When visiting Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre, there is a feeding platform in a tree, where they put out food to entice the semi-wild orangutan’s in the forest to come and eat.
If they do show up to feed, you can see them swing down across ropes to the platform, where they tend to just sit down and munch away.
Although it is interesting to get a first glimpse of them on the platform, it is at a distance, and not that exciting after a while. However there are trails you can walk, and if your very lucky, spot a semi-wild orangutan away from the feeding place.
And such it was how Tompom the orangutan was discovered. She was calmly just sauntering along on the trail itself, not bothered by the human’s that came upon her. All the photo’s on this page are of Tompom.
Being close and observing her for around 45 minutes, as she stopped from time to time to eat termites from their nest, and jump up into the trees, was a wildlife experience you could never forget. She had funny mannerisms, some of which could almost be human.
After all the orangutan’s are closely related to us. The name orangutan in the local language means, “Person of the forest.”
At Sepilok they encourage the orangutan’s to discover new foods to eat in the forest, away from what they feed them. They do this by feeding them the same foods, in the hope they will get bored of it! The best thing for these primates is to eventually have no contact with humans at all. To eventually live free in the wild.
Seeing these orangutan’s brings you a connection to how brilliant and adorable they are, and also to their plight in the wild.
If you would like to help these orangutan’s, you can donate here: http://www.orangutan-appeal.org.uk/ They have an adopt a baby program.
Visit that website, read the stories, see the pictures. You will be glad you did. Also a fun story about getting pissed on by an orang-utan.
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