A male and two female orangutans were released last week in the TNBBBR National Park, after years of rehabilitation.

For the first time in 2020, three rehabilitated orangutans have been released into the wild.

As always, these orangutans have been rescued and rehabilitated at the Nyaru Menteng Rehabilitation Centre. Here, they’ve been cared for and trained in skills that wild orangutans master. During the past few years, they’ve lived at the pre-release islands. Here, the orangutans live in a natural environment, within a confined area where they can be monitored. Once they’ve put their skills to the test and proven that they can survive on their own, they are ready to be released into the wild.

The first released orangutans of the year is male orangutan Chio and females Rizki and Mia. Mia’s release is a particularly big achievement. She has been in rehabilitation for 16 years until she’s finally been declared ready to move back home to the wild.

To reach the release site the orangutans are transported by boat and car for 19 hours (Photo: BOSF / Indrayana)

 19 hours to freedom

This time the release took place in the Bukit Baka Bukit Raya National Park (TNBBBR) in Central Kalimantan.

After 19 hours of traveling, the orangutans were released at the Hiran watershed, a new release site in the TNBBBR forest. The area was taken into use last year, in order to create a more even distribution of orangutans in the national park.

When the time finally came and the doors to the cages were opened, all three orangutans eagerly rushed out to freedom and climbed up the nearest tree. The steep terrain in the area made it easy for the orangutans to quickly climb up high in the canopy and continue deeper into the forest.

The release was carried out by our Indonesian partner BOS Foundation and the Central Kalimantan Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA).