21 May 2010

JoJo makes a meal of his friendship with Jingo!

Volunteer Paloma updates us on how JoJo and Jingo are getting on at International Animal Rescue's emergency centre in Ketapang, West Kalimantan.

JoJo and JingoSince arriving at the emergency rescue centre in November, JoJo has struck up a firm friendship with Jingo. Since they were always playing with each other through the cage bars, it was decided that they should share an enclosure together.

When we opened the door between the cages, Jingo went straight to JoJo and they started to play together, hugging each other and generally being very boisterous! It was great to see how happy they were to be together and how much fun they were having. However, after about two days, we started to notice that JoJo, who is almost twice the size of Jingo, was starting to steal his food, like a cheeky little kid! So unfortunately, we had to separate them again, as Jingo will start losing weight if he doesn't get enough food. Right now they are in separate cages, but they still play together through the bars and we often open the door between cages after feedings so they can still play and have fun.

JoJoAlthough JoJo is a healthy orangutan, last month he came down with pneumonia. Thankfully he recovered well after being treated by IAR's medical team. We don't know, but we suspect the poor diet JoJo was given after he was taken from the forest and kept as a pet has affected his immune system, making him more susceptible to diseases. We hope the vitamin rich diet JoJo gets at the centre will rectify this!

He has also lost quite a lot of hair recently and IAR medical staff believe this is because of the implementation of a new diet, which has seen him shed the weak hair he has had, hopefully to be replaced by much thicker hair. Even with the thin, weak hair, JoJo is so handsome, we can't wait to see how fantastic he will look with his new thicker coat!

17 May 2010

New playground builds up the strength and confidence of our infant orangutans

Volunteer Paloma updates us on the new playground for the rescued infant orangutans at International Animal Rescue's emergency centre in Ketapang, West Kalimantan.

Bunga and Monti in the new playgroundIn February, the babies and the infant orangutans at the International Animal Rescue centre were moved to a new, bigger facility just down the road. At this facility we have set up a new infant/baby school, creating a playground area where the orangutans can play in the trees, which have been connected to each other by ropes, ladders, hammocks, tyres and platforms, which the orangutans love climbing on. It has been very heartwarming to see infant orangutans grow in confidence and strength, as they become used to using all four of their limbs and climbing high up in the trees.

Melkyand Sindi enjoying the new playgroundEvery day, different enrichment is placed in the trees, to encourage them to forage and to stimulate their curiosity. Their food is also placed in the trees and on raised platforms, encouraging them to look for it themselves, off the ground, where they can catch parasites. All these things encourage natural wild behaviour!

Although the play area is not huge, it is a lot bigger than the play area they had before, and all the orangutans are making great progress.

We can't wait to see how much they will improve in the new rehabilitation centre, when all the money is raised and it is finally built!

5 May 2010

Baby Monti makes amazing progress

Volunteer Paloma updates us on the progress of Monti, a rescued infant orangutan at International Animal Rescue's emergency centre in Ketapang, West Kalimantan.

MontiMonti, the smallest baby orangutan at the International Animal Rescue centre, has grown a lot since the moment she arrived in November, at the age of just 5 months.
She is making very good progress, her teeth are growing and she can eat some bananas and some easy fruit to chew. Her hair is growing too, getting very long and with an intensive colour.

Right now she is very active and independent, even at her young age. Normally we used to leave her to play in the lowest branches of the tree but quickly she begins to investigate and go further up. Sometimes you cannot see her and the only thing you see are the leaves moving on the top of the tree!

MontiShe has very good coordination for her age and there aren't any hard ways for Monti, she always finds a way to go to the place she wants. Sometimes, when I am close to another tree, she finds the way to get where I am, using the connections between the trees we made with the ropes, and if another baby or infant orangutan is in her way she is very brave and tries to bite them or push them away - even Melky the biggest of the infants!

It is as though, just from a couple of months ago until now she is getting a very strong personality, and she is making amazingly good progress for her age undoubtedly!

We will keep telling you about the progress of this brave baby orangutan who is growing healthy and strong in the International Animal Rescue orangutan baby school.