December 2012 Update from the International Animal Rescue Orangutan Centre in Ketapang
The biggest news in December was, of course, the long-awaited release of Pelangsi into his new forest home. A lot of hard work and preparation went into that day, but the team effort paid off and his fond farewell was a terrific achievement. Behavioral observations are underway and assessments are being made for the next group that will be scheduled for release in the future.
The holidays came and went in a blur as usual, and although nobody likes to step on a scale this time of year, we have begun measuring the weights of the juveniles in our transit area more often. This will allow us to better assess their nutrition and ensure they are growing properly. Melky, Bunga, Ongky and the rest are doing well, and it is easier to catch them on their way in for the night as they are often too anxious to go out to the playground earlier in the day to bother being weighed. Ucil has graduated and is now hanging out with the older babies, which has him spending more time playing and less time trying to escape.
Galang is fitting in well in baby school and the novelty of his plentiful haircoat has worn off. When he was first introduced, Roy and many others followed him closely for a chance to feel or tug his flowing locks. Rocky is developing some more muscle by trying to keep up with the bigger babies and is now happily eating a variety of fruits and vegetables. Rickina suffered a little setback with an injury to one of her arms, but she is recovering quickly. Part of her treatment has been rest, which she has decided is no fun, making it difficult to keep her contained.
Construction continues at the new center, so we are using the time to prepare equipment and supplies that will need to be moved. Also, plans are being made and new protocols designed to ensure that daily activities will run smoothly once we are able to settle in.