Facebook video shows orangutan defending forest against bulldozer

Facebook video shows orangutan defending forest against bulldozer

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Dramatic footage released last week by an animal welfare group shows a wild trying in vain to fight off destruction of its habitat in .

The , filmed in 2013 but posted on Facebook on June 5th for World Environment Day by International (IAR), was shot in Sungai Putri, a tract of forest in Indonesia’s West Kalimantan province that is being destroyed for timber.

Most of the remaining forest in the Sungai Putri landscape lies within a concession held by PT Mohairson Pawan Khatulistiwa, a logging company.

The video shows an orangutan running along the trunk of a tree that an excavator has just knocked down. The orangutan reaches up to grab the excavator bucket, but loses its balance and falls to the ground.

IAR says the orangutan was subsequently captured and brought back to the group’s wildlife rehabilitation center in Ketapang.

“This desperate orangutan is frantically seeking refuge from the destructive power of the bulldozer; a machine that has already decimated everything else around him,” IAR wrote in the Facebook post. “Despite all the obstacles thrown at them, our team were able to rescue this orangutan and bring him to safety.”

Sungai Putri is one of the most important refuges for orangutans left in Indonesian Borneo. According to orangutan expert Erik Meijaard, Sungai Putri may be home to over 1,000 orangutans.

“At about 57,000 hectares (141,000 acres), [Sungai Putri] is a sizable piece of forest enough to provide a home to between 750 and 1750 orangutans,” he wrote in an analysis on the track of coastal peatland. “This makes it the third largest population of this in the province.”

The canal through the peat swamp forest in Sungai Putri allegedly dug by PT Mohairson Pawan Khatulistiwa. Image courtesy of International Animal Rescue.

A report released last week by Greenpeace revealed that deforestation is continuing within Sungai Putri despite a high-level Indonesian government commitment to protect the forest.

“This is a major embarrassment for the Indonesian government, which has consistently promised to protect Sungai Putri,” Greenpeace campaigner Ratri Kusumohartono said in a statement.

Greenpeace and IAR are calling on the Indonesian government to stand by its commitment.

“Sungai Putri is home to one of the largest populations in the world and we are at a critical point for the , without forests like this they can’t survive,” Karmele Llano Sanchez, program director of International Animal Rescue in Indonesia, said. “It is time for the Indonesian government to ensure the full protection of Sungai Putri, its environment and wildlife.”

This article was first published by on 15 Jun 2018.


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MY heart just sunk at the sihgt of human ignorance and disrespect to any form of life.We live on every day basis bleeding mother Earth until we will swept by all our wrong doing to all the species on our planet.Suddenly a horrible silence will sweep nature.Too late.


This video, if not staged, sounds an alarm to the Indonesian government to ensure the full protection of Sungai Putri, its wildlife and environment. My gut instinct tells me the Indonesian politicians care more about the illegal bribes and lavish dinners they receive than impose any restrictions, penalty or fines on those that are responsible for the deforestation. Money talks, bullshit walks!!