31 March 2012
Bukit Batikap 10.00 am. The first helicopter Bell that carried Tata landed safely at Bukit Batikap Conservation Forest!
Bukit Batikap 10.00 am. Tata was carried out of the helicopter and taken into the forest by our on-site technicians.
Bukit Batikap 10.20 am. The second helicopter Squirrel arrived not long after the Helicopter Bell. Squirrel carried Bang Jagur, Kali, Bunga and Mama Tata on a sling.
Bukit Batikap 10.25 am. Bang Jagur, Kali, Bunga and Mama Tata were taken off the sling.
Bukit Batikap 10.30 am. Bunga was loaded onto a kelotok – a traditional wooden boat of Kalimantan – to be taken upriver into her release site.
Bukit Batikap 10.35 am. Bang Jagur was dropped off at his release site at the Bungaran Transect Route, while Tata, Mama Tata, Kali and Bunga were taken a little bit further upriver to the Lone Transect Route.
Bukit Batikap 10.50 am. For Bang Jagur, we chose a release point right under a banyan tree with the cage’s door facing the tree. Orangutans love banyan trees because they can eat the fruits, the leaves and also the barks. Bang Jagur was the first to be released at around 10.55 am, but we couldn’t get a clear photo of him because he was so quick! When our Program Manager Anton Nurcahyo opened his cage, Bang Jagur bursted out of the cage and quickly climbed the banyan tree in lightning speed!
Bukit Batikap 11.00 pm. The first 5 orangutans were successfully released by noon. The following is our transect system map, showing all the routes that we will take to monitor the orangutans.
Bukit Batikap 12.26 pm. The Bell 212 helicopter carrying Jojo and Ika landed safely. This was the second trip today.
Bukit Batikap 12.30 pm. We took a team photo in front of the Bell 212 helicopter before it returned to Puruk Cahu.
The Headquarters, Bogor 16.30 pm. We received a call via satellite phone from Jacqui Sunderland-Groves, our Senior Advisor who is now in the forest, and we are happy to inform you that ALL 11 orangutans have been released successfully. As the cages were opened, each of them came out and headed straight to a nearest tree and started to climb without any hesitation. Ompong and Komeng, the two adult males, looked very happy and very at home in the trees.
“All releases were completed by 15.30 pm,” Jacqui reported. Jacqui has promised to call from time to time with monitoring updates and will be back sometime next week with photos and new video footages. We wish our beloved orangutans – Bang Jagur, Kali, Bunga, Mama Tata, Tata, Ompong, Komeng, Ika, Jojo, Yaya and Heldy – the best of luck and a long happy lives in their new home!