Day 1: Orangutan Visit

There are very few words to describe the majestic beauty of these close relatives of the human species! So, I will let some of the pictures speak for me.

Day 1: As we walked calmly into the jungle it was raining like a monsoon! Creeks were swollen to almost rivers, paths were under water, and the orangutans like to stay up high under self-made cover of branches and leaves… so chances of seeing them are even rarer during rain.

As we walked along the almost knee deep water paths we noticed a number of orangutans off the side of the path in the nearby bushes. Our guide Abul, called them and they came closer! We were heading to the feeding station and so were they.

The feeding stations are areas were the park staff put out bananas and cane for the orangutans to eat while being observed at a distance. This allows visitors to gain an appreciation for these lovely animals without close interaction. It also allows staff to assess the health of the animals and determine what might be done if one is in need of medical care. When food is in abundance in the jungle there is very little activity at the feeding stations as the orangutans tend to stay in the canopy in high food seasons.

Orangutans do not like to travel by foot on the ground as they have to be very cautious of predators, such as cloud leopard and Sumatran tiger.

But, unfortunately humans are the biggest threat through habitat destruction, poaching, and hunting for sport!

The feeding station was empty when we arrived but soon enough a few brave orangutans came down from the tree tops to grab some bananas. A mother with a baby on her back snuck onto the platform and had a bite to eat before the large male pushed her away. She grabbed a couple of bunches of bananas and retreated to the close by tree with her baby hanging on to her back.

The large male was named Roger and he is currently the ‘king’ of this group. He sat regally on the edge and peeled the bananas in one motion and ate them as quickly! He ate an amazing number of bananas in minutes. He flicked away any fingers that dared to try to snatch a banana from under his careful eyes!

There were a couple of juveniles and the antics were as to be expected for teens playing with each other. Climbing, swinging, and general tom-foolery accompanied by some squeals and even a type of laughter!

We stayed until there was a good crowd then decided to make our way back to the boat for a lovely dinner! Overall, a very good day visit with the orangutans!





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