Our partners at the Centre for Orangutan Protection (COP) opened an orangutan rescue and rehabilitation centre called ‘COP Borneo’ in April 2015. It is located in the Labanan research forest in East Kalimantan and has the status of Special Designated Purpose Forest.
COP Borneo has a range of facilities including a block of quarantine cages, socialisation cages and one small medical clinic/baby house. It also has facilities for COP staff including a dormitory for staff that stay overnight to care for sick or infant orangutans. COP has numerous teams in the field that investigate and confiscate illegally held captive orangutans. Most of these are young orphan orangutans whose mothers have been brutally killed. Once rescued from often squalid conditions, these vulnerable orphans will undergo a full medical check and quarantine period at COP Borneo before being introduced to other orangutans at the centre. Many confiscated orangutans are very young and require regular milk feeds. These youngsters have full time carers during the day and night so they receive the care that they would have had from their own mothers.
After the young orangutans have completed their quarantine period, they can then take part in forest school where they develop the required skills needed for release into the forest. These skills include nest building, traveling in the canopy and being able to identify and access various forest food sources including fruits, leaves, bark, cambium and insects. Young orangutans spend many years learning these skills from their mother in the forest, so the rehabilitation journey is a slow process. Orangutans develop at different rates depending on their age, temperament and how long they spent with their mother in the forest.
COP also owns three small islands in the nearby Kelay river. These islands provide the perfect habitat for older orangutans to prepare for release into the forest or as a permanent home for orangutans that are unable to be released.
Funds from our orangutan adoption program go towards the rescue and care of these precious orphaned orangutans at COP Borneo.