International Animal Rescue Saving animals from suffering around the world

IAR's orangutan babies move to their new home

The long-awaited day when the first of IAR’s rescued orangutans would move to their new accommodation has finally arrived. Eighteen small babies in the care of our team in Indonesia have been moved from the clinic in Ketapang into their new forest home in Sungai Awan, accompanied by their babysitters.

For the past year IAR’s new orangutan rehabilitation and conservation centre has been under construction in West Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo. The new buildings and enclosures have been designed to provide all the orangutans in our care with bigger and better facilities where they can build up the strength and skills they will need to survive in the wild.

With Phase 1 close to completion, the babies’ move to the new premises was carried out quickly and efficiently, with minimum stress to the team’s young charges.

It was an emotional moment for the team when the babies first set foot on the new site. Four of the very young ones went straight out into the forest play area. They were a little apprehensive at first and stayed close to their babysitters. Baby Gunung was among the boldest and bravest and was soon reaching out to the tree branches and starting to explore his new home.

The rest of the infants were settled into their new night cages to give them a chance to get used to their surroundings. They will be

encouraged to venture out into the trees in the morning.

IAR Chief Executive Alan Knight said: “This is a memorable and joyful moment for everyone who has been involved in building the new centre.  In the days to come we will be releasing photos and video of the babies exploring their new surroundings: this will be the best way I can think of thanking our supporters for helping to fund the project – they will be able to see with their own eyes what a difference they are making to these young orangutans’ lives. The move to the new centre is a significant stage in their journey towards eventual release back into the wild.”

For more photos of the move, visit our dedicated album on Facebook!