Meet the orangutans

We have currently over 35 orphaned orangutans in our rescue center and forest school. We invite you to meet the orangutans and learn their stories.


Rehabilitation Center Sintang





 Penai was born around the year 2004.

Penai is a very sensitive female orangutan. She is curious, calm and watchful, although nowadays she can stand her ground in a play-fighting with Jamilah, whilst for a long time she couldn’t be put together with Jamilah because she got very scared.

Penai can already make great nests from leaves and branches in her enclosure. Unfortunately they are often destroyed by one of the other orangutans.

Before she was brought to the rescue center, she lived in a very small cage in the village Penai, hence the name. Wrong food and no ability to move or even stand straight up made her far to small and skinny for her age. 

Her health improved a lot since her arrival in the rescue center.






Matuari was born around the year 2007.

Anything that can be broken, will be broken by Matuari. He is a very strong male orangutan, but he also has the patience to untie any knot and unscrew all enrichment items.

Matuari’s favorite enrichment item are ring stabbing and angling for food items that hare hanging outside the enclosure on robes. 

Like many rescued orangutans Matuari also came to the rescue center very stressed and traumatized. We do not know much about his background, but like many of our rescued orangutans, he probably witnessed his mother being killed before he was sold to an illegal wildlife dealer.






Jamilah was born around the year 2001. Jamilah loves to be around the baby orangutans.

Jamilah likes to tease the caretakers. She sits in the door to prevent them from shifting her to another enclosure and pokes them with a stick when they are cleaning the floor below her enclosure.

Jamilah is an adult female who has faced many challenges in her life before she was rescued and brought to the Sintang Orangutan Center. As a baby her mother was killed by hunters. This is when Jamilah also got shot in her left eye and lost her vision in that eye. Jamilah had to spent 12 years on a palm oil plantation. Here she was forced to drink beer and smoke cigarettes. She was bullied a lot by the palm oil workers and when she stood up to that once. 
Jamilah has a very dominant personality and makes very clear who she likes and dislikes. A lot of orangutans are easily scared of her. She mostly tolerates to be around the baby orangutans and likes only 2 male caretakers. When she is in her period she likes to even flirt with some male caretakers. However human females are a no go.






 Beno was born around the year 2008. Beno is a very friendly male but he needs to get a bit more self-assured/confidence. We are convinced that time will help him to do that.

Beno moves very slowly, accept for one occasion: when he ran in to some nasty bity ants high up in a tree. He wasn’t yet capable of moving trees, so the only way to escape them was to slide all the way down like a fireman. When down he run towards the keepers to help him get rid of those nasty ants. Rain isn’t one of his favorites either, even when the additional food was handed out, Beno wouldn’t come out of his shelter place. 

When Beno was brought to the rescue center, he could hardly walk. Beno lived in a small cage for years, where he was not able to climb and develop any muscles.
Beno had a beautiful thick, long and deep red coat when he arrived. But do not get fooled by the appearance: a captive orangutan loses his thick coat fast by moving through the enclosure, a thick coat in captivity usually means not a lot of movement. A thick coat is therefore a sign of a lack of movement.
Beno loves to play with the young orangutans. The older orangutans can tell he is still a bit insecure and bully him whenever they get the chance.

Beno was one of the first that was brought to forest school in Tembak. For a very long time he didn’t make a lot of progress. Also the other orangutans started to bully him more and more, until he got so unhappy that we decided to move him back to Sintang to put him together with young orangutans. From that moment he changed a lot and became a happy orangutan again that enjoyed playing with his little friends.

Beno has a odd way to eat his food. He puts whatever he gets with peel still on it in his mouth, to be sure he owns and keeps it. 







 Bablu was born around the year 2000. Bablu has a great talent as water sprinkler. She knows perfectly how to reach the staff with water that she sprays though her teeth and then perfectly lands on wherever she wants the water to be. 

Bablu never shares her food. Except for when the Rocky ask her to share. Rocky is even able to take the fruit or veggies out of her mouth again to give it her.

Bablu is an adult female who has lived a human life for 17 years. Her mother was killed by hunters and Bablu was sold as a baby to a family in Putussibau and later brought to a family in Singkawang from where we rescued her. As a member of the family, she was also provided with human food, which made here extremely obese. She did many things just like humans, she even was taught to wear a headscarf and to go on a toilet even during the night. 

When Bablu arrived in the rescue center she could hardly move and was out of breath by every move she made. It took a while before she got used to her normal diet in the rescue center- fruit and vegetables - but she lost a lot of weight since then. 

She was so much treated as human that she didn’t seem to realize she wasn’t a human herself. For a long time she didn’t seem to enjoy anything that every other orangutan would love. She didn’t want to play with anyone and was often very grumpy. However since she is put together with some of the babies, that are too big for the baby enclosures, she seems to finally enjoys playing and enjoy live. Although at the beginning she did not like us seeing her play. When we would look at her, she would stop playing and look back at us as if she got caught up.

Bablu loves hang on the roof fence with all hands and feet together and then swinging very fast from left to right. 







 Mungki was born around the year 2001. Mungki arrived very traumatized and stressed. He still doesn’t like to share his food with anyone else and still gets easily stressed when he sees new people. 

He has beautifull slim hands with very long slim fingers. He prefers the female keepers and their undivided attention.

Mungki spend over 10 years of his life as a pet with a local family. Most of the time he was locked in a cage. When he escaped on day, the family experienced the strength of an orangutan. They had to get 10 people and a big strong net to get him (roughly) back into his cage. Because they no longer felt safe with Mungki around, they called the Forest Police to find a new home for him. 

When Mungki arrived in the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center, he was in a reasonable physical condition. His mental condition however was very bad. Munkgi was extremely traumatized and it took a quit while to make him a ease. Still when there are new people he gets easily stressed and starts shaking his body from left to right. 






Oli was born around the year 2008.

In 2010 the forest police brought a little boy to the rescue center. His name was Oli, then 7 years old and very small for his age.
Oli is a very friendly orangutan, but like to disturb the other orangutans when eating. He loves to watch other orangutans solve enrichment puzzles, rather then solving big issues himself.

Although he is not a great puzzle solver, he enjoys getting food out of a jerry can or honey out of a piece of wood. These are simple enrichment items we use in the rescue center, next to more difficult puzzles to motivate them to use their intelligence and solve problems.

Oli’s right leg was broken during captivity,  never healed properly, and now paralyzed. Nevertheless he is still a good climber.






Agung was born around the year 2006. Agung is a very friendly male orangutan. He is very easy to recognize because of his thin body and his dark and long face.

Agung loves food. He likes it so much that he first puts all food items in his mouth, before he starts chewing. Banana is his favorite food and he can get quite upset if you walk by with bananas without giving him some.

Agung was freed from a life as a pet on Christmas Day 2015. 







Selly was born around the year 2014.

Selly is a tough little girl, although the caretakers had to rock her asleep the first 2 months in the rescue center.

She is an acrobat and a little rascal who loves to destroy the nests other babies try to make. In forest school she gives the caretakers a hard time, because once up in a tree, she won't come down again, which is fantastic, but can be hard when forest school is over and also the teachers would like to have a break too.

Selly was only one and a half year old when she was brought to the rescue center from a shop in Belimbing district. The owner of the shop bought her from a hunter and kept her as a pet for around a month he said. The owner said he bought her because he felt sorry and to prevent a terrible life for her. At the shop  she was attached to a pole with a rope.
Selly is a strong girl who likes to play with everybody and is always cheerfull  and hyperactive.






Maya was born around the year 2014.

In February 2015 a scared baby orangutan arrived at the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center. Her name was Maya and she was only 1,5 years old. Her short life until then she spent in a extremely small box. 

She was then still too young to be put with the other, slightly older, babies. Therefore she spent the first few months with Selly in an enclosure.  Maya would  scream out loud when Selly tried to invite her to play, she felt rather bullied by her. They were not really friends. But suddenly that changed in Maya considering Selly as her best friend forever, screaming out loud when Selly would be too far away from her. Wherever Selly went she went too, and if possible Maya would climb on her back and join Selly wherever she went.

Even at forest school she follows Selly, but sometimes Selly goes to quickly and suddenly Maya doesn’t know how to move for or backward. When she gets to scared to come down, the caretakers have to climb up the tree to get her down.

Grabbing the water hose when the caretakers are cleaning the enclosure, is one of her favorite games.

Maya is a very smart, active and curious girl. A few of her fingers have parts missing as if they are cut off. When she arrived this was infected. Her fingers might have been hit by the machettes of the poachers whilst her mother was being killed with these same machettes.






Dora was born around the year 2014. Dora is a clever and quite dominant female who will scream if she does not get her food in time.

Dora loves to play with water and spits water from her mouth whenever you walk by.

Dora was only two years old when she arrived in the rescue center. More information on her background will follow soon.






Mona was born around the year 2016.  Mona is friendly with all the other young orangutans but she still prefers to play by herself.

Mona is becoming more active and a good climber. Most of the enrichment items are still a bit difficult for her, but she does really look closely at how the other orangutans figure out what to do with the items.

Mona was ‘ found’  in the forest by a local hunter. He took Mona home, but she was so skinny that he thought she was ill and would not survive without experienced caretaking. 6 days later he brought her to the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center.  






Aming was born around the year 2014. Aming was a very friendly en quiet male. He was immediately at ease when he arrived in the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center and he is close with all the orangutans and the keepers.

Because of his calm personality, Aming helps with introductions of other orangutans, who can be very scared and traumatized.

When Aming arrived in the rescue center, he was just 1 year old. Before that, Aming lived with a human family for over a month. This family bought him from a poacher but they were aware of the fact that it is illegal to have an orangutan as a pet. They got afraid of the consequences of illegally owning an orangutan and handed Aming over to the rescue center. 

Aming was so small, we had to temporarily house him in a special enclosure, together with another baby, Mona, who arrived at about the same time. Whilst Mona was very scared and often crying, Aming was calm and at ease. Although Aming is quiet, he now is getting more active every day.






Leon was born around the year 2014.

Leon is a very clever little male orangutan. He is way better than other orangutans of his age to figure out difficult enrichment puzzles.

Leon’s favorite enrichment item is coconut.

More information on his background will follow soon.






Benazir was born around the year 2012. Benazir is a quiet female orangutan who likes to be on her own. She is not very interested in playing with the other orangutans.

She likes enrichments a lot. Leaves with smears is one of her favorites, although she is sometimes scared to grab her enrichment when Bablu is near.

Benazir has funny habit, she often sucks on her index finger. 

More information on his background will follow soon.






Moni was born around the year 2014.

Moni is a calm and clever male orangutan. He can already make a small nest from leaves, which is pretty special for his young age.

Moni loves coconut and he can open a coconut by himself.

More information on his background will follow soon.






Rocky was born around the year 2013.

Rocky is a very playful male orangutan who loves new enrichment items.

Although Rocky loves new enrichment items, he also likes to take away the enrichment of other orangutans, like horned Rotan from Nicky, preferably already peeled.

He is one of the few that is good friends with Bablu and can even  take her food at all times and she will give it away. More information on his background will follow soon.






Boy was born around the year 2012. Boy is easy to recognize because he is pretty much bold.

Most of the times they find an orangutan locked up in a small cage, so that is what they where looking for when the Forestry Police and SOC went to conviscate him,. But all they found was a little fellow running around in clothes. That boy turned out to be Boy, a small male orangutan.

Boy was brought up like a human baby. He wore clean clothes and dypers every day, got a daily shower and he was thought to brush his teeth and use a human toilet. He was even taught how to ask for a clean shirt when it was dirty.

Fortunately it did not take a long time to get Boy used to his new environment in het rescue center. Boy was very scared of the other orangutans at the beginning. Aming helped him during the introduction to slowly get familiar with ‘orangutan beings’. After that he adapted the normal orangutan behavior very fast and he is now very much at ease in his temporary home surrounded by his own species.






Victoria was born around the year 2014.

Victoria is one of our champions ‘nest-building’ between the babies. She can make beautiful nests constructions out of leaves in the highest basket in her enclosure and sleep on it.

Although she lives in a enclosure with other baby orangutans, Victoria prefers to be by herself. Most of the time you will find Victoria moving around high up the enclosure.

Victoria was only 9 months old when she arrived in the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center. She was found by local workers who were building a road through the forest. We hear this story a lot, people who find baby orangutans in the forest. This story is very unlikely however, for mother orangutans never leave their children by themselves. A more plausible version of the story is that they have killed the mother orangutan and took the baby to sell or keep as a pet. 







Niky Chris was born around the year 2012. 

She is a very smart female orangutan. She likes to test all the new enrichment items we give her, but she prefers natural enrichment, like coconut and ants’ nests.

When the spikey Rotan is served as enrichment, Oli and sometimes Rocky gather around Niky. For Niky this is a piece cake, a real expert in removing the spines from the rotan. As soon as she is done, the other orangutans are keen to take the ready to eat rotan of her. She is not yet tough enough to say now, and cries when they have unrightfully taken it off her. After which she will start over again until she gets her own to eat.

Niky Chris was only 5 years old when she arrived at the rescue center. After her mother was killed in the forest of Ketanang Region, she was sold to a family in Sandai. They kept her as a pet in a very small cage and a chain around her neck.

The only food she received was rice, a local sweet drink, cendol and some fruit. Niky was malnourished and underweight when she arrived in the Sintang orangutan Rescue Center. 

She recovered well and is now full in her learning process of becoming a fantastic wild orangutan.



Forest school Tembak





 Jojo was born around the year 2009. Jojo is by far the best student in forest school. Climbing the trees, building nests, finding food and motherhood skills, she has them all!

Very often you will find Jojo suck on the thumb of her feet. Even when she is walking or climbing a tree. This behavior was so intriguing for the other orangutans, that they wanted to taste her thumb as well. How big their disappointed was when they found out there was no special taste on her thumb.

Jojo lived for over a year in an outside cage in the village Tembak. We do not know where she was held captive before that time.

Jojo was allowed to go outside of her cage very regularly and often drove on a motorcycle with the man who bought her. 

At first she did not want to be left alone, so the keepers had to stay with her until she fell asleep.  Still for a long time they always had to wave before they left, this ment she knew the keepers were not really leaving her but just temporarily.  This all changed within a year and now Jojo is a cheerful and clever girl.

She was one of the first to enter the forest school. 

She is definitely the best student of her group and she can pass her skills to the other young orangutans.






 Juvi was born around the year 2008. Juvi is an active female orangutan who acts like a tough little guy. She does not want to be held or comforted by the keepers and from the start she already likes to do everything by herself.

Juvi is at her best in forest school where she can climb the trees and do her own thing.

Juvi lived as a pet with a priest for approximately 3 years. When the priest was relocated he gave Juvi to a bishop in Sintang, who put her in a small cage in his backyard. In 2012 Juvi was confiscated by the Forest Police and brought to the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center.
Juvi was in a reasonable good health and could quickly be introduced to another young orangutan, Jojo and they have been close friends ever since.






 Mamat was born around the year 2003.

A very small chicken cage on a chicken farm was Mamat home for many years. When he was brought to the rescue center, Mamat was in extremely bad condition and had no strength at all in his arms and legs. 

Not being able to walk, he rolled his body over the floor to get from one place to another.

Mamat recovered remarably  well in the rescue center. However he still has problems climbing the trees due to damaged mussle development, but also his vision has been damaged, all  caused by the severe malnutrition and bad condition on the chicken farm.This makes it hard for him to keep up with the other orangutans who improve their skills quickly in forest school, which does frustrate him from time to time

The grateful look in his eyes and his will to survive make Mamat a beautifulll being and one of the biggest perseverance orangutans in the center.






Terra was born around the year 2013.

Terra was only 4 months old when she arrived in the Sintang Orangutan rescue center. Her mother was killed right before her eyes. At her arrival Terra was completely bold and had only 2 teeth. She constantly kept her tiny arms around her body to protect herself. 

But Terra recovered very fast from het traumatising experiences. She has a very strong will and is always cheerful.

Terra has sometimes funny places to sleep, like while just hanging on a branche.






Momo was born around the year 2007.

More information on Momo will follow soon!






Digo was born around the year 2013. Digo is an excellent climber. From all the babies in forest school she was the first to immediately climb the highest tree.

Although Digo has had no education from her natural mother at all, she has a great natural instinct to climb the trees and search for food. 

More information on her background will follow soon.






Ribang was born around the year 2013.

Wherever you see Ribang, you’ll see Gagas and Terra. That’s why we call them The Three Musketeers. 

Ribang is a tough little guy, although he is terrified by the cluck of a chicken.

Ribang was only 6 months old, when he arrived at the Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center. Her former ‘owner’ kept her as a pet before she was confiscated by the Forest Police. Ribang became immediately close friends with Gagas and Terra. Whenever we took Ribang to forest school without Gagas and Terra, Ribang would start to cry.

At this stage he is learning to go into the forest without her two companions because if they are together they don’t climb too much by splitting them up we combine them with orangutans that motivate them more.






Joy was born around the year 2011. Joy is a very friendly female who feels most at ease being in the background. 

She is an excellent climber and definitely one of the smartest students of her group, although she still prefers to sleep on the ground.  

Joy is an female orangutan who has lived with a human family for many years. At daytime she could walk in and out of the house, a nighttime she was chained with a rope around her waist. The family did their best to take care of her and they were very upset when the forest police confiscated her. Nevertheless Joy was in a bad physical condition when she arrived at the rescue center, mainly because she was fed human food and cookies. 

It took a while before we gained Joys trust. She was also scared of the other orangutans. 

Now Joy is in perfect condition and one of the smarter girls of her group.






Bembi was born around the year 2011.

Bembi is an extremely clever girl. She can untie any knot and solve puzzles in a second. She even knew to warn one of the keepers for a snake. 

Bembi was one of the first that discovered bark being a food resource at forest school. With eating that she set a whole new trend for all the other orangutans in forest school, who did not really eat bark before Bembi showed them how great bark tastes.

Bembi was confiscated by the forest police from a family in Sanggau. Here she spent her life in a very small cage, drinking only canned sweet milk and eating cookies. Fortunately she recovered very quickly in the rescue center and adapted easily to her new environment.
In no time she climbed the trees and started making the first steps to build a nest. Bembi was one of the first younger orangutans to enter forest school in Tembak.






Putri Tanjung was born around the year 2005. 

Tanjung is a very active female orangutan. She is quit dominant towards the other orangutans.

She likes to destroy things. She destroys enrichment, concrete floors – with enrichment items and anything else that crosses her path. It shows how extremely strong orangutans are; it is not easy to chop concrete of a floor!

Before Tanjung was confiscated by the Forest Police, she spent 8 years of her life in a very small cage of 1.5 m3. It is a miracle she was in reasonable physical condition, when she arrived at the Sintang Orangutan rescue center, because she had hardly space to move for such a long time and she was fed only rice and fruit.






Gagas was born around the year 2013. Gagas is a very playfull, cheerfull male with a friendly bold head. 

Gagas loves to climb the trees and drop himself to the ground.

Gagas will yell, scream and lay on the ground making wild swimming-ish moves if he does not get his food in time.

More information on his background will follow soon.






Cemong was born around the year 2013.

Cemong is a very independent girl and she was an excellent climber, right from the start.

She was so lucky to be 'adopted' by Jojo, the best student of Tembak forest school group. Jojo looks out for Cemong all the time and even lets her sleep in her nest. It's the perfect way for both of them to learn from each other on motherhood and living in forest school.

Cemong lived iallmost two years n a very small enclosure as a pet. The family where she lived said they found her in the forest. She had fallen out of a tree and the mother ran off. This is very unlikely,  mothers never leave their children alone nor run off.
Cemong was regularly left without company or food when the owners went in to the forest for days. She would then scream out loud because she was so hungry and thirsty. The screaming saved her life, because the neighbours had reported her to the Forestry Police.
When Cemong arrived in the rescue center her hair was extremely long, because of lack of movement.
How wonderful it is to see she became now  one of the best students in forest school.






Viko was born around the year 2013.

Viko is a small female orangutan, although she eats like a grown up male. 

Viko is a good climber but she still has a lot to learn. She is not really interested yet In forest school and prefers to be with human companionship. 

Viko was given as a present to a local police officer. Although he knew it is illegal to keep an orangutan as a pet, he kept her at his house for almost 2 years. When the Forest Police together with SOC confiscated Viko, they found her in a very small concrete cage with just 2 small peepholes.






Oscar was born around the year 2013.

Oscar is a brave active little boy and life is one big game for him. This naughty little fellow is extremely playful and he loves to climb a tree and drop himself to the ground. For a long time it looks like his body had too much skin.

You have to be carefull if you pass Oscar. One of his favorite games is to pee on you when you walk by. 

Oscar was taken from the national park Danau Sentarum by local villagers. They kept him as a pet, before the forest police confiscated him and took him to the Sintang Orangutan rescue center.

The first time we went to forest school, he immediately proved he had great skills to find forest food all by himself.






Molly was born around the year 2013. Molly is a smart girl and a good climber.

Any new enrichment or exercise she will immediately try out

Molly originally is from Central-Kalimantan. She lived as a pet with a man in Tebellian. When he could not pay his bills anymore, the creditors took Molly and put her in a small, dirty cage. Molly got bigger and stronger and regularly escaped of her creaky cage. On these occasions she ran into to neighbourhood to steal chick eggs, fruit and hide laundry she took from clotheslines. 

Continues complaints of the neighbours made the owner decide to hand Molly over to Sintang Orangutan Rescue Center. 

When they arrived to investigate the situation, Molly just escaped again and was eating fruit high up in a tree.

We did know immediately Molly already had good climbing and foraging skills. 



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