Preserving the orangutan | SITA


Emission offsetting helps preserve the native endangered orangutan and its habitat.

Our first program  is underway in Borneo, and one area of focus is preserving critically endangered orangutan and their habitats in Borneo, with the number of orangutans declining over the past 40 years. Much of  its habitat has  been destroyed through fire, illegal logging and palm oil plantations. Through Natural Capital Partners we're contributing to the work of two organizations (Orangutan Foundation International and Rimba Raya) that are  working hard to  preserve and restore that habitat, as well as provide rescue, rehabilitation and release activities to the orangutan population. 

"The  destruction and degradation of the tropical rain forest, particularly lowland forest, in Borneo and Sumatra is  the main  reason orangutans are threatened with extinction." Orangutan Foundation International 

Keeping  orangutans  safe 

The Orangutan Foundation Initiative (OFI) was founded in 1986 by Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas and associates and operates Camp Leakey, an orangutan research center, within Tanjung Puting National Park. OFI also runs  the Orangutan Care Center and Quarantine (OCCQ) facility near Pangkalan Bun, which is home to 330 displaced orangutans, and helps manage the Lamandau Wildlife Reserve where rehabilitated wild born ex-captive orangutans are released into the wild. Through its field programs, OFI also provides employment at these facilities for over 200 local people.  

We were fortunate enough to visit the Orangutan Care Centre and see the essential work that they do. In  the wild, orangutan infants share an intense bond with their mothers and do not leave them until they are at least 8 or 9  years of age.  At the OCCQ this intense bond is replicated, to some extent by the relationships orangutan infants develop with their caregivers. These local caregivers are the surrogate mothers who help take care of  the infants until they become large juveniles.

The aim is always to release these animals back into the wild. OFI work within the national park as well as Rimba Raya to identify suitable release sites that enable enough space for the orangutans to live comfortably. Around 250 orangutans have been tagged for tracking, and successfully released to date. As part of the release program the orangutans can visit a daily feeding station. This helps to top up  their diet with local fruit and milk.

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