Slow Loris Emergency Appeal
Last November the daily routine of our team in Java was turned upside down when more than 200 slow lorises were delivered to our primate centre! They had been poached from the wild and were destined for sale in the pet markets in Jakarta.
Among them was Kang, a baby slow loris, who had been living in the Sumatran rainforest. By day he slept with his mother in the fork of a shady tree and at night she taught him to catch insects and other small prey.
Until one day disaster struck.
Poachers hunting for lorises to sell in the pet markets caught Kang and his mother. Mother and baby were prised apart and stowed into separate small crates with countless other lorises. The plastic crates were stiflingly hot and airless. Some lorises attacked each other in the cramped space, causing horrific wounds. Others died from suffocation.
Two days later the haul of 238 lorises was seized from smugglers by forestry officials in Jakarta and delivered to our primate centre. Kang was among them. He had lost a finger after being bitten.
Our team was already caring for 100 lorises and the centre was bursting at the seams. But the new arrivals were in urgent need of treatment if their lives were to be saved – how could we possibly turn them away? We were their only hope ...
In spite of their limited resources, facilities and funds, our team did the only thing they could - they got on with the job of checking and treating each individual. They didn’t waste time worrying about how they would cope in the long term. They set about saving as many lorises’ lives as they could.
March 2014 – four months on and our team continues to provide first class care for the nearly 400 lorises. Some lucky ones have already been released back into the forest. Others will need dental surgery before they can be set free. The smugglers had cruelly cut off their teeth to make them easier to handle.
In time we hope to return all the lorises to their home in the forest. But for now it is up to us to keep them safe and sound, whatever the price.
Please give whatever you can today to help us care for Kang and his friends. With your help we can cover the cost of food, medicines and staff to look after these slow lorises and prepare them for release back into the wild. It's the least we can do after all they've been through.
Please donate today
With your help we have been able to release some of the lucky ones that had escaped serious injury. On 1 April the team translocated 30 of the confiscated lorises back to Sumatra and released them in Batutegi Forest, Lampung. The release operation involved a large team of vets and keepers to prepare the little primates for their journey.
They were all given a final complete medical check and had a microchip inserted so that they can be identified in future.
I know you will be as thrilled as I am to know that these slow lorises are back in their rightful place in the forest. But we still have a long way to go. There are still many lorises in our centre receiving the treatment and care they need to recover from their ordeal and grow healthy and strong.
Those that have had their teeth cut are undergoing dental surgery to heal their wounds and repair their broken teeth. Without this surgery they stand little chance of ever being set free.
If you haven’t yet sent a gift in response to my appeal but would like to donate now, I can assure you that your donation will be most gratefully received and put to immediate good use. With your help, even those lorises that are still sick or injured will be given the best chance of a full recovery and a return to the forest where they belong.