IAR volunteer Paloma Corbi introduces the latest addition to our Orangutan Emergency Centre in Ketapang, Western Borneo
Lasmi arrived at International Animal Rescue’s Orangutan Emergency Centre on 7 November. She is a female with an estimated age of around 3-4 years old. She comes from Ketapang: apparently she was in a police station and she stayed there for about a week before she was brought to the centre by the forestry department. The information they gave us from the police is that Lasmi was being carried in a cage by a man who, when he saw a group of policemen, ran away, leaving the cage with the orangutan on the ground. So the police decided to take her to their offices until they contacted the forestry department. Unluckily, there are some gaps in the information and it is always hard to find out what the real story is.
In any case, when Lasmi arrived at the centre she weighed 9kg, and her face was extremely pale. So her faeces were checked and they were fine. She was also given a blood test the day after she arrived to check if she had any problems and, although she was negative for Malaria, Typhoid was found. She was treated with antibiotics and also given iron to help with the production of red blood cells. When the vets analysed the blood by biochemistry, a liver dysfunction was identified. Thus she will be treated for a long time with multivitamins that come from the curcuma root. This helps the long term recovery of the liver function and apparently the treatment seems to be working as the last blood test done recently by biochemistry has been better compared with the first one done. Moreover she has been tested with the tuberculin test and it seems to be fine.
Lasmi was very shy during the first days but she is getting more confident by the day. She is still in the quarantine period which lasts 1or 2 months, so until then she can’t be socialised with the other baby orangutans. However, she likes to play alone with the enrichments and she loves to put everything on her head, even the food! Consequently she is frequently covered with mango, seeds or papaya. Strangely enough she doesn’t like bananas or the milk, but she loves syrup!! We are all looking forward to seeing her play with the other babies. Let’s hope it’s soon!