Old Man of the Forest

The Orang Utan is one of the four species of great ape and the only one that is exclusively Asian.  In fact, it can only be found on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra.  It’s name actually means “man of the forest” but it has often been romanticised in older writings as the “Old Man of the Forest”.

Risking severe injury from airline food, the Lone Grey Squirrel flew to the town of Sandakan, Sabah and took a 50 minute hair-raising limb endangering  taxi ride to the Sepilok Orang Utan Rehabilitation Centre.  This Centre which is run by the Wildlife Department receives Orang Utans which have been orphaned or displaced by forest clearing.  They also received animals which were kept as pets cause they are so cute as babies but were then abandoned by their owners when they grew up and became too much to handle.

The centre tries to re-train them to survive by themselves in the jungle.  More than 100 orang utans have gone through this rehabilitation program.  Many have been successfully returned to the jungle, appearing occasionally to visit and to free load on fruits made available twice a day at a feeding platform.  Some though, never graduate to freedom and remain dependent on human feeding for their entire lives.

Armed only with my new Canon EOS 60D camera (Birthday/Christmas gift from the wife.  Thanks dear) which was making its very first field debut,  this intrepid squirrel risked being mistaken for a banana to bring you (dear readers), the following picture report.

Informing Both Tourist and Apes About the Feeding Times
The Trail into the Dark Heart of Borneo
Ooi! Where's the Grub? Don't Keep an Old Lady waiting....
Mother & Baby & Feeder Makes Three
Platform A - Feeding Time
The Other Great Apes seen in Sepilok
Young Training Recruit Showing What He Thinks About Lessons
Learning the Ropes - Literally
"The One That Got Away Was This Big!"
Meet Baby "Chiquita" Wearing Diapers
Going Home With the Rehab-er in a Hand Basket
Little Chiquita Sticks Her Tongue Out
"Well, that was all rather interesting but you will please excuse me ....it's my nap time. Bye-bye"