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International Animal Rescue Saving animals from suffering around the world

Orangutans Charlie and Jingo are freed from suffering

An orangutan that was living in shocking conditions over an open sewer in Borneo has been rescued by International Animal Rescue’s team in Indonesia and is now safe and comfortable in our temporary rescue centre in Ketapang, West Kalimantan.

Charlie, a fully grown adult orangutan, was discovered chained up on a pallet in the city of Pontianak. He was severely emaciated and clearly in pain from the shackle on his arm. IAR’s Veterinary Director Karmele Llano Sanchez was called in to treat his wound but she was devastated at having to leave the animal in such shocking conditions and urged International Animal Rescue to take action to help him.

Charlie's living conditions prior to rescueAs a direct result of treating Charlie and learning of the many other orangutans in West Kalimantan that are being displaced by deforestation and either killed or kept in captivity, IAR recently embarked on a new project to help them. In August the charity signed an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding) with the Forestry Department to agree plans for the rescue, rehabilitation and release of orangutans that have lost their treetop homes to deforestation, mainly to make way for new palm oil plantations. The agreement allows for the purchase of land and the creation of facilities where the rescued animals can be rehabilitated before being released back into protected areas of forest.

There was no adequate rehabilitation facility for rescued orangutans in West Kalimantan and the priority was to set up a temporary centre where they could be given appropriate care and veterinary treatment. International Animal Rescue took over a small centre in Ketapang which already housed a number of orangutans. However the facilities were extremely poor and the charity immediately set about building new enclosures: Charlie is now settling in to one of these.

Jingo the Orangutan on his way to a better lifeCharlie was taken by ferry on a fifteen hour journey from Pontianak to Ketapang. Also rescued was another adult, Jingo who, being less stressed by the rescue operation, was transported by plane to Ketapang. Both orangutans are reported to be doing well and already enjoying their new living conditions. Once International Animal Rescue has established its new, permanent rescue centre, they will both be moved there for further rehabilitation.

Chief Executive Alan Knight, who took part in the rescue and relocation, said: "We are all hugely relieved to have rescued these two orangutans from the squalor and misery they were living in. We are also immensely grateful to everyone who has supported our orangutan rescue project and given us the means to help these poor animals and others like them."