After successfully releasing 3 rehabilitated orangutans last month, the BOS Foundation Orangutan Reintroduction Program at Samboja Lestari will release a further 2 rehabilitated orangutans into Kehje Sewen Forest in East Kalimantan
Samboja Lestari, East Kalimantan, May 5, 2012. Two rehabilitated orangutans – Berlian and Hamzah – will be transported to Kehje Sewen Forest from the East Kalimantan Orangutan Reintroduction Program at Samboja Lestari. The other orangutan – Abbie – will follow later. This is the second orangutan release in East Kalimantan during 2012, and efforts will continue in line with the target set by the Indonesian Orangutan Conservation Action Plan 2007-2017, which was proclaimed by the President of the Republic of Indonesia in the Climate Change Conference in Bali in 2007, whereby all healthy and able orangutans in rehabilitation centers are returned to natural habitat by 2015.
The Kehje Sewen Forest is an ecosystem restoration concession (ERC) managed by PT Restorasi Habitat Orangutan Indonesia (RHOI), a company that was established by the BOS Foundation on April 21, 2009. As a non-profit organization under Indonesian law, the BOS Foundation is not legally allowed to acquire ERCs, thus RHOI was created as a vehicle for such acquisitions. This ERC gives us the right to use and manage a certain piece of land – in our case a forest – which we desperately need to release rehabilitated orangutans from the BOS Foundation Orangutan Reintroduction Center in East Kalimantan. Additionally we still need to secure more land in Central Kalimantan also for our ongoing orangutan release program there.
Director of BOS Foundation, Dr. Jamartin Sihite stated, “In order to achieve the target of rehabilitated orangutan release by 2015, more land for ecosystem restoration is desperately needed and our efforts are ongoing. The role and support of our government especially the Regency Government of East Kutai and the Regency Government of Kutai Kartanegara become very important in this matter.”
The successful implementation of this orangutan release is due to the support and generosity of BOS Foundation’s partner, Vier Pfoten and also the private sector such as Kaltim Prima Coal, Arutmin Indonesia and Ecodynamics. These releases are also fully supported by all stakeholders, including the Ministry of Forestry, the Provincial Government of East Kalimantan, the Regency Governments of Kutai Kartanegara and East Kutai, as well as the Conservation and Natural Resources Authority of East Kalimantan (BKSDA East Kalimantan) and the people of Kutai Kartanegara and East Kutai.
Transportation has been further supported by the Indonesian Air Force and Lieutenant. Riva Yanto, Sepinggan Balikpapan Air Base Commander stated, “It is an honor for us to work with the BOS Foundation on this orangutan release activity which is a government and international program. Orangutans are an endangered species and it is our duty to participate in orangutan conservation.”
Bungaran Saragih, BOS Foundation Chairman of the Board of Trustees added, “I am very pleased to see the enthusiasm of the private sector and the stakeholders who have demonstrated a willingness and contribution to this activity. I also hope for there will be more parties involved in the future, in order to attain our goal, to release all of the healthy and able orangutans currently cared for at our reintroduction centers, to their natural habitat.”
As with our first release in East Kalimantan last month, after being flown by Indonesia Air Force helicopter type NAS-332 Super Puma from Air Squadron 6 Lanud Atang Sandjaja Bogor, two orangutans will be placed in acclimation cages located in the Kehje Sewen Forest for one-day adjustment period before they are finally released. Our field teams will carefully monitor the orangutans progress.
- Rini Sucahyo
Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation
- Ajeng Ika Nugraheni
PT Restorasi Habitat Orangutan Indonesia