Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011
This Mothers Day, instead of giving Mum a box of chocolates or some flowers, why not adopt an orangutan infant through the Australian Orangutan Project. They are in desperate need of funds to buy medicines, nappies, food and the basics of life and each orangutan infant requires one-on-one attention for the first eight years of their lives as that’s the time it takes for an orangutan mother to teach her infant how to survive in the rainforest.

There are over 2,000 orphan orangutans in care who would struggle to remember what it was like to have a mother as they were either killed or died as a result of the logging and deforestation in Kalimantan and Borneo and then snatched to be sold as illegal pets.

The Australian Orangutan Project not only looks after orphans but also those who were born in captivity such the new infant twins Ganteng and Ginting, who were born on January 21st at the Batu Mbelin orangutan quarantine centre near Medan in North Sumatra. Twins are not unheard of amongst orangutans and the other great apes (chimpanzees, gorillas and bonobos) but they very rare, and relatively few zoos around the world have experience of them.

This birth is also particularly notable in that BOTH parents are BLIND. The mother, Gober, is an elderly female, probably well over 40 years old, who is blind in both eyes due to cataracts. The Father, named Leuser, was found in 2006 having been shot by local villagers 62 times with an air rifle. Three of the rifle pellets lodged in his eyes, two in the left and one in the right, and he is now totally blind as a result.

Mother and father and the two new twins are all housed at the Batu Mbelin orangutan quarantine centre, near Medan, North Sumatra, Indonesia which is the only such centre in the world for Sumatran orangutans. The twins are available to ‘foster’ for the annually for just $110, helping to care for all their food, shelter and care needs.

OR for the small sum of just $55 a year, families and individuals can adopt an orphan orangutan and make a real difference to this unique and special species. Care of these infants is costly and requires round the clock veterinary and nurse care to ensure they are in a healthy condition, have fresh food, are jungle trained and given the best chance to survive and return to the wild. Each family and/or individual adopting an orphaned orangutan receives an adoption pack.

“Adoption is an opportunity to make a real difference to orangutans’ lives by improving their survival chances, offering them a safe, secure and stable future and habitat. From what our adoptive families tell us it is an enormously rewarding experience for them too,” says Leif Cocks, President and Founder of the Australian Orangutan Project.

So to celebrate Mother’s Day this year, please help the orphans and our new twin orangutans to celebrate too by giving them a future. You can donate by visiting www.orangutan.org.au and following the prompts. Or why not adopt an orphan in the name of your mother or your family!

Contact Profile

Australian Orangutan Project

The Australian Orangutan Project (AOP) is a not-for-profit organisation, supporting orangutan conservation, habitat protection and orphan care in order to save the species from extinction.
Rebecca Cooper
P: 1300 733 273
W: www.orangutan.org.au/


mothers day, orangutan, support, gift, endangered, animals



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