Orangutan appeal

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What is the problem?

Destruction of the orangutan habitat

Deforestation is a huge threat to orangutans. Vast areas of their habitat, the forests of Borneo, are being destroyed to make way for plantations to meet the global demand for palm oil. Large numbers of orangutans are being rescued from isolated patches, often from the last tree standing.

But rescuing them isn’t enough. For orangutans to have any hope of surviving they need large areas of forest. This also gives them protection from hunters who shoot mothers to steal their babies for the pet trade. Although the Indonesian government has set up Forest Management Units to oversee state-owned forest land, the Units have limited experience in managing an endangered ape population. The outlook is bleak. But we’re changing this.


What we are doing

Dr Pak Ade leading the research team in the field

We’re funding a team out in Borneo to work with the agencies that use the forest. For the first time ever, our team is working closely with the agency in charge of logging operations for Central Kalimantan, one of the five provinces of Indonesia. It’s home to over half of Borneo’s wild orangutans. By working with this agency, the logging concessions are better controlled and management practices are now in place that take orangutans and other protected species into consideration. This is the first time we’ve managed to directly influence logging concessionaries’ behaviour – fantastic progress.

We’re also supporting two Forest Management Units so they can protect the orangutans’ habitat. The forests they look after are prone to forest fires and there have been reports of conflicts between orangutans and local farmers. Most conflicts arise when orangutans raid crops, desperate for food after their habitat and feeding grounds have been destroyed. We’re going to train the Units to carry out their own orangutan surveys and, where they find orangutans, work with local communities to alleviate human-wildlife conflict.

We must protect orangutan habitat. Please donate today


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