Tiny, terrified orangutan baby is plucked to safety after he and his mother were found starving

2012-09-27 15:04:00

Wide-eyed in fright, a baby orangutan tries his best to escape the clutches of a looming man, the Daily Mail reports.
He and his mother have been threatened with starvation by the expansion of palm oil plantations which are destroying their natural habitat in the Sumatran forest.
It's no surprise the sight of yet more humans has terrified them, but these ones have arrived to take them to safety.
The pair were found by rescuers in an isolated patch of woodland which was due to be cleared for more plantations.
More orangutans are being cut off, putting them at risk of food shortages or being captured for the pet trade.
Hanna Adcock was making a film for the UK charity Orangutan SOS when their partner organisation, the Orangutan Information Centre’s Human Orangutan Conflict Response Unit attempted the relocation in Aceh, North Sumatra.
She said: 'The safest way to save these animals is to tranquilize them and relocated them to a safe area.
'In this instance, the team first had to track and find the orangutan and move them to safer, less-dense area in order to be tranquilised.
'The team make noises to try and steer the orangutan into their desired location and there were spotters on the ground and up in the hills in order to ensure that we didn’t lose her.'
When the team finally got the chance, they shot the mother with a tranquiliser gun, but it took little effect so they had to wait until she tired enough to hit her again, this time with a blow pipe.
Hanna said: 'The mother was aggressive and struggled to hold on with everything she could as she grew weaker in the tree.
'As she was carrying a young male baby, the team believed she resisted falling and letting go even more as she thought that the fall would kill the baby.
'Eventually, the struggle was too much for the mother and she fell into the net.'
Medics made sure they had not suffered any spinal injuries or broken bones, but found two air rifle bullets under the mother's skin.
As the mother lay flat out on the ground, the baby cried out.
Once it was deemed safe, they taken off in 4x4 vehicles to a protected national park, where once the mother had come to, they were released.

 

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