Release

[PRESS RELEASE] The First Cross-Province Orangutan Reintroduction

November 28, 2013. Posted in Article, Release

THE FIRST CROSS-PROVINCE ORANGUTAN REINTRODUCTION

from the BOS Foundation Orangutan Reintroduction Center, Nyaru Menteng in Central Kalimantan

 to the RHOI Kehje Sewen Forest in East Kalimantan

As a part of the 7th orangutan reintroduction event from the Borneo Orangutan Survival (BOS) Foundation program in Nyaru Menteng, Central Kalimantan a mother-infant orangutan unit and one further individual are released in the BOS Foundation/ RHOI Kehje Sewen Forest, East Kalimantan. Along with this release event, five orangutans from the BOS Foundation orangutan program at Samboja Lestari in East Kalimantan are being translocated to Nyaru Menteng. These five orangutans who are of sub-species Pongo pygmaeus wurmbii will undertake the last stage of rehabilitation process on one the pre-release islands which are managed by the BOS Foundation in Nyaru Menteng before finally being released into their natural habitat in Central Kalimantan.

Balikpapan, East Kalimantan, 1 December 2013. A mother and her infant, and one other individual are released into the BOS Foundation / RHOI Ecosystem Restoration Concession, Kehje Sewen forest in Kutai Timur and Kutai Kartanegara Regencies, East Kalimantan. This orangutan reintroduction is an exceptional release event given it encompasses the first cross-province orangutan reintroductions from the BOS Foundation Central Kalimantan Orangutan Reintroduction Program at Nyaru Menteng to the BOSF / RHOI Ecosystem Restoration Concession, Kehje Sewen forest in Kutai Timur and Kutai Kertanegara Regency, East Kalimantan. Despite having been rehabilitated over many years at our Orangutan Rehabilitation Center, Nyaru Menteng in Central Kalimantan, Yayang and Sayang and Diah are released in East Kalimantan.

Mother-infant pair, Yayang and Sayang will be released in East Kalimantan following obligatory DNA testing procedures prior to any orangutan reintroduction. The test results revealed that Yayang belongs to the sub-species Pongo pygmaeus morio which naturally inhabits the eastern part of Kalimantan.  In compliance with welfare practices, Yayang’s dependant infant, Sayang, will be released with her mother to ensure her welfare.

Diah, a 17 year old orangutan is released in East Kalimantan because her sub-species is also Pongo pygmaeus morio which naturally inhabits the eastern part of Kalimantan. Confiscated from Sebulu, East Kalimantan, Diah underwent the first part of her rehabilitation process in the BOS Foundation Reintroduction Centre, Samboja Lestari – East Kalimantan. However, Samboja Lestari experienced over capacity issues following a massive influx of rescued orangutans due to large deliberate forest fire set in 1998. Diah, who had only been in Samboja Lestari for one year had to be translocated to the newly established Nyaru Menteng in Central Kalimantan.

Thus following the standard national and international guidelines from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Yayang, Sayang, and Diah will be released into the Kehje Sewen Forest, East Kalimantan, instead of the Bukit Batikap Conservation Forest, Central Kalimantan like other rehabilitated orangutans from Nyaru Menteng. The Kehje Sewen Forest is an Ecosystem Restoration Concession (ERC) managed by PT Restorasi Habitat Orangutan Indonesia (RHOI), a company that was established by the BOS Foundation on April 21, 2009, solely to acquire the right to use and manage a forest which was desperately needed to release rehabilitated orangutans from the BOS Foundation Orangutan Reintroduction Center at Samboja Lestari.

This release event involves the collaboration of all the stakeholders, including the Central and East Kalimantan Provincial Governments, Kutai Timur and Kutai Kartanegara Regencies Government, Central and East Kalimantan Conservation and Natural Resources Authority, and the whole community of Kutai Timur and Kutai Kartanegara.

The BOS Foundation strives to meet the targets of the Indonesian Orangutan Action Plan and Conservation Strategy 2007-2017. The Action Plan was launched by the President of the Republic of Indonesia during the Climate Change Conference in Bali, 2007. It states that all eligible orangutans currently in rehabilitation centers should be released by 2015, and it has been endorsed by all levels of government, including the provincial and regency levels.

“The reason why Yayang, Sayang, and Diah have to be released in another province is because as orangutans originally from east of Kalimantan, they have different genetic traits compared to those from other parts of Kalimantan. We are committed to preserving the genetic purity of each released orangutan as this is very important. And with the many orangutans waiting to be released we have currently under our care and rehabilitation, there is a probability that we will have to do more cross-province releases in the future.” Dr. Jamartin Sihite, the CEO of the BOS Foundation said in his statement.

Director of Biodiversity Conservation, Ministry of Forestry, Dr. Ir. Novianto Bambang W., MSi states, “Orangutans are protected by the government and their status is Endangered. Based on this and Yayang-Sayang’s case, the government will commence orangutan population monitoring, which includes orangutan sub-species identification by DNA test. Hence the orangutans living beyond their natural habitat, especially those who have been kept by humans and were sent to rehabilitation centers, will be able to be released back into their natural habitat according to their sub-species.”

Anton Nurcahyo, Program Manager of the BOS Foundation Reintroduction Centre at Nyaru Menteng says, “At the moment in Nyaru Menteng there are more than 500 orangutans eligible to be released. Most of them still need to undergo DNA testing to determine their sub-species origin, which will ultimately determine where they will be released. Unfortunately, DNA testing is expensive. By conducting the test prior the orangutan’s admission to a rehabilititation center, the government will help lessen the costs borne by orangutan rehabilitation centers and enable orangutans to complete the rehabilitation process within the appropriate locality.”

The BOS Foundation also conveys its gratitude for all the supporting parties, donors, and sister organisations, such as BOS Australia.

Contact:

Paulina L. Ela

Communications Specialist

Yayasan Penyelamatan Orangutan Borneo

Email: pauline@orangutan.or.id

*************************************************************************************

 

Editor’s Note:

 

ABOUT BOS FOUNDATION

Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) is an Indonesian non-profit organization based in Bogor, West Java, Indonesia, which is committed to rescue, rehabilitate, and reintroduce Borneo orangutans to their natural habitat, as well as educating local communities and increasing public awareness about the conservation of orangutans.

Established since 1991, BOSF has partnered closely with the Ministry of Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia and are supported by international donors, as well as other organizations. BOSF is currently headed by Prof. Dr. Bungaran Saragih as Chairman of the Board of Trustees. For more information, visit www.orangutan.or.id.

ABOUT RHOI

PT Restorasi Habitat Orangutan Indonesia (RHOI) is a company founded by the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) on April 21, 2009, for a specific purpose, namely to get the forest concession for Ecosystem Restoration (HPH-RE) to release the orangutans.

As an NGO, BOSF could not legally obtain an HPH-RE permit. That’s why BOSF built a private company, namely RHOI, as a vehicle to get it. HPH-RE provides RHOI with the authority to use and manage a concession area – in this case, a forest – which is required to release rehabilitated orangutans from the two rehabilitation centers owned by BOSF, located in East Kalimantan (Samboja Lestari) and in Central Kalimantan (Nyaru Menteng).

On August 18, 2010, RHOI was granted the HPH-RE from the Ministry of Forestry of the Republic of Indonesia, for a forest area of 86,450 hectares in the Regencies of Kutai Kartanegara and East Kutai, East Kalimantan Province. This concession provides a viable, protected and sustainable habitat for orangutans, for 60 years, with renewal option for 35 more years. Funds to pay for the license, amounting to around 1.4 million U.S. dollars, were obtained from BOSF donors in Europe and Australia.

RHOI calls this concession “Kehje Sewen Forest”, adopting a local Dayak Wehea language in which ‘kehje sewen‘ means orangutan. So Kehje Sewen is a forest for the orangutans. For more information, visit www.theforestforever.com.

[Press Release] 100 Orangutans Have Been Released Back into the Wild by the BOS Foundation

October 13, 2013. Posted in Article, Release

Dedicated to the commemoration of World Habitat Day on October 7, 2013, the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation East Kalimantan Orangutan Reintroduction Center in Samboja Lestari releases 9 orangutans to their natural habitat. This release marks the 100th orangutan reintroduction by the BOS Foundation back into the wild.

Samboja Lestari, East Kalimantan, October 13, 2013. Since February 2012, the BOS Foundation have released 91 orangutans; 82 orangutans from their rehabilitation center in Nyaru Menteng, Central Kalimantan, and 9 orangutans from their rehabilitation center in Samboja Lestari, East Kalimantan. On October 13-14, 2013, the BOS Foundation release 9 more orangutans from Samboja Lestari to their natural habitat in commemmoration of World Habitat Day 2013, bringing the total released orangutans since 2012 to 100 individuals.

Nine orangutans depart from the BOS Foundation East Kalimantan Orangutan Reintroduction Center in Samboja Lestari to designated release points in the Kehje Sewen Forest in East Kutai and Kutai Kertanegara Regencies. These orangutans comprise 6 females and 3 males, of whom the profiles can be read in more detail in the attached file entitled Orangutan Release Candidate Profiles.

The nine orangutans depart from East Kalimantan Orangutan Reintroduction Program in Samboja Lestari to Sepinggan Airport, Balikpapan. From Sepinggan Airport, they are transported to Uyang Lahai Airport, in Miau Baru Village, Sub-District of Kumbeang, Kutai Timur Regency. From Uyang Lahai towards Kehje Sewen, the orangutans are transported by a helicopter through several flight groups. On the first day, October 13 2013, three individuals are transported and the remaining six will be flown on the next day.

The Kehje Sewen Forest is an Ecosystem Restoration Concession (ERC) managed by PT Restorasi Habitat Orangutan Indonesia (RHOI), a company that was established by the BOS Foundation on April 21, 2009, solely to acquire the right to use and manage a forest which is desperately needed to release rehabilitated orangutans from the BOS Foundation Orangutan Reintroduction Center at Samboja Lestari in East Kalimantan.

The orangutan release event which also coincides with the 14th anniversary of Kutai Timur Regency involves the collaboration between the BOS Foundation and all stakeholders, including the East Kalimantan Provincial Government, East Kutai and Kutai Kertanegara Regency Governments, East Kalimantan Conservation and Natural Resources Authority, and the people of East Kutai and Kutai Kertanegara. The BOS Foundation would also like to convey their gratitude for the moral, financial and logistical support from private sectors such as BCA Bank, BNI Bank, Salim Ivomas, and First State Investment, as well as individual donors, partner organizations such as BOS Australia and BOS Switzerland and other conservation organizations across the globe who are concerned with orangutan conservation in Indonesia.

The Head of the East Kalimantan Conservation and Natural Resources Authority, Tandya Tjahjana said, “The orangutan is a species protected by national and international law. Unfortunately their population is decreasing due to many factors, including forest clearance. This has cost orangutans their natural habitat and triggered conflict with humans. In return, often wild orangutans are caught to be kept as pets, sold, or even killed because they are considered pests.”

“The effort to conserve orangutans in their natural habitat is not easy. Cooperation and support are needed from the government, the business sector, and the communities. Orangutan release event from the Samboja Lestari Orangutan Reintroduction Program to the Kehje Sewen forest is one of the efforts taking place in order to maintain orangutan populations in the wild. It is in accordance with the government’s plan to release all the displaced orangutans to their habitat by 2015,” he added.

Successful orangutan reintroduction programs need to continue in order to return displaced orangutans back to natural habitat and achieve the target stated in the Indonesian Orangutan Conservation Strategy and Action Plan 2007- 2017. The Action Plan was launched by the President of the Republic of Indonesia during the Climate Change Conference in Bali, 2007. It states that all eligible orangutans in rehabilitation centers should be released by 2015, and this has been validated by all levels of government, including the provincial and regency levels.

Tandya Tjahjana further said, “The cooperation between the East Kalimantan Conservation and Natural Resources Authority with the BOS Foundation has been established since 1991. As the result, 18 Eastern Kalimantan orangutans have been release since April 2012 and another 221 orangutans are still undergoing rehabilitation program.”

Dr. Ir. Jamartin Sihite, the CEO of the BOS Foundation stated, “The private sector, especially those who gain profit from the natural resources and have caused the displacement of orangutans from their natural habitat, should play a more active role in terms of living up to their responsibilities. Most companies in Indonesia have taken for granted the practice of sustainable natural resources management and Best Management Practices, and shifted this responsibility to other parties. Logically, a negative impact from a business practice should be the responsibility of the business practicioners. This must change and the change must be encouraged and monitored by the government through strict regulations.”

drh. Agus Irwanto, Acting Manager of the BOS Foundation Samboja Lestari Program also stated, “Currently, the BOS Foundation is taking care of 200 orangutans in Samboja Lestari. With this release of 9 orangutans to their natural habitat, we are optimistic that more releases will take place in the future. Undeniably this release is only possible with the support from many parties. Our main challenge at the moment is the lack of available suitable and safe forest which can serve as orangutan release locations. In the near future the Kehje Sewen will reach it’s maximum carrying capacity. Therefore, to achieve the target stated in the national Action Plan, we need the full support of the government and their apparatus to protect orangutan habitat.”

Orangutan conservation efforts will be futile without any consolidated action to conserve the forest. Undoubtedly, the biggest challenge is to find suitable forests which serve as orangutan habitat. Dedicated to the World Habitat Day 2013, the release of 9 orangutans is an appeal to all the stakeholders to make forest conservation a reality, for the future of both orangutans and our sustainable welfare.

Media Contact:

Nurwidiyana Markhumawati

Samboja Lestari Database Officer

Email: diyan_rplcrew@yahoo.co.id

Paulina L. Ela

Communications Specialist

Email: pauline@orangutan.or.id

<!–:en–>Announcement of Change in Program Manager<!–:–><!–:ID–>Pengumuman Perubahan Program Manajer<!–:–>

August 28, 2013. Posted in Release

Dear our valued employees, partners and friends of the orangutans,

It is with a mixture of regret and hope that we are writing to announce a change in the position of the Samboja Lestari Program Manager at the BOS Foundation. As of August 23, 2013 Aschta Boestani Tajudin has stepped down from this position to return to her family in Surabaya and also to take on new challenges closer to her home.

Aschta had been our appointed Program Manager at Samboja Lestari since September 5, 2011. As many will remember, it was a service Aschta had undertaken with significant dedication during past critical periods experienced by the BOS Foundation and through the current period of many achievements, highlighted by the successful reintroduction of nine orangutans from Samboja Lestari to the Kehje Sewen Forest.

Looking into the future, Agus Irwanto, our Head Vet at Samboja Lestari, has agreed to take over the position as the Acting Samboja Lestari Program Manager effective from August 23, 2013. In addition to his considerable and recognized experience in veterinary science as well as in orangutan conservation, Agus will bring his collective experience and strategic understanding of the complexity of this program.

Therefore please join us in offering great appreciations to Aschta for her perseverance, devotion and commitment and wishing her all the best for the future, as well as welcoming Agus in the position of Samboja Lestari Program Manager and also sending best wishes in his promising new endeavor!

Best regards,
Dr. Jamartin Sihite
CEO