THE SMALL RUNDENG
She will go into history of the Orangutan Conservation Programme as the youngest orangutan ever brought to our Quarantine and Rehabilitation Centre. Nearly six months after her arrival, it is clear that the little one is doing well.
Right before New Year’s Eve, on 30th of December 2019, the orangutan baby Rundeng was rescued. Farmers in the small village «Pasa Rundeng Village» in the north of the island of Sumatra found her in their fields, supposedly lonely and abandoned by her mother. The organisation «BKSDA Aceh» confiscated the orangutan baby and brought it to our Quarantine and Rehabilitation Centre. The little one was named after the place she was found. The day of her arrival, she was only a week old. Meanwhile, several months of intensive care have passed. A caretaker is always with the little one in the Quarantine and Rehabilitation Centre. Rundeng’s dependence is heavy. The bond is similar to the relationship between a human mother and her child in the same phase of development. The caretaker feeds her, gives her peace of mind, security and body warmth. They even sleep in the same room within the centre. Rundeng is still so young, she does not yet play outside with her fellow orangutans. So far she still spends her day inside. She is not yet developed and strong enough to sit on her own. In line to her development, she refuses more frequently the physical contact with the caretaker and tries to move more independently every day.
Rundeng is in very good health. Mentally as well as physically she is making good advances so far. At least five times a day, she receives milk as food. In the future, the caretakers will try to make solid but soft or pureed food tasty for her. In fact, the teeth of her lower jaw are starting to grow slowly.
We have learned from previous experience with other orangutan babies that providing miniature climbing frames can be extremely useful at a very young age. As soon as the small animals are capable enough, they begin to reach for the branches. In this way they start to train their muscular system. Therefore, the climbing frame is also ready for Rundeng and she already begins to climb it carefully. It is for sure that she will need our care for some more years before she can be released into the wild. Her reintroduction will take place after about four years, during which she will learn everything she needs to survive in the wild.