Saturday, June 12, 2010

Jenny and Mallotus

We would like to introduce you to a couple of the orangutans we had the opportunity to meet on this trip. Jenny is an older Bornean orangutan in the KOCP research site. They are not exactly sure how old she is but they think she may be in her 40s. Her son, Mallotus, is almost five years old and is starting to become more independent, although the researchers/observers told us that he still sleeps in the nest with his mother every night. Jenny has become somewhat habituated over the years and is tolerant of researchers watching her. One day per week (at most) Red Ape Encounters and KOCP bring eco-tourists to the study area so they can have the rare experience of seeing an orangutan the wild. We were lucky enough to see them foraging and moving around the forest. Mallotus drank water out of a tree cavity then played with the water for a while. We were so grateful for this wonderful experience!

Jenny climbing above us.

Jenny’s son, Mallotus, peeking through the trees.

We also experienced interesting forest bridges, leeches (it was a team effort to keep them off of each other, but they’re not as bad as we thought they would be), and saw elephant prints and dung! There were about 100 elephants in this area only 2 weeks ago. It has been quite an adventure and we are learning so much.

Elephant dung with mushrooms and plants growing out of it.

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