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Do you remember Ben, the 500th orangutan the BOS Foundation released in November 2022? Our Post Release Monitoring team recently spotted him in his new forest home. Find out how he is doing!

One morning, the Post-Release Monitoring (PRM) team in the Bukit Baka Bukit Raya National Park, Central Kalimantan, set off at 5 a.m. to patrol the forest. Team members Andri and Yardi had planned to patrol the Hiran watershed area along the Rangkong River. However, as they passed through Pematang Diki, the two met Ben, an orangutan BOS released in November 2022. Not far from Ben’s location, they could see the nest he had built and slept in the night before. 

Not wanting to waste this opportunity, Andri and Yardi stopped to observe Ben and record his behavioural data. Ben was resting on the branches of a kapok tree (Ceiba pentandra), eating its leaves. Several times, he let out some disapproving grunts.

Ben has adjusted perfectly to his new wild home

During observations, Ben actively moved through the trees as he foraged and ate a lot of forest food. Evidently, he had crossed the Rangkong River via the branches. Before the rain set in, Ben constructed a comfortable nest in the top of a ficus tree. Observations of Ben ended when the team was certain that he had settled into his nest for the night. 

Ben’s body condition score (BCS) indicates that he is in good health. In addition, his exploration of the forest and foraging activity shows that Ben has adjusted well to his new environment since his release. 

This report is welcome news, indeed. We are hopeful that Ben will do his part to produce a new, wild orangutan population in the forests of Borneo.

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