Playdate in the jungle

What a day for our Post Release Monitoring (PRM) team! During their regular observations in the forest, they recently spotted three mother-infant pairs in one spot: Lesan and her daughter Ayu, Sayang and her daughter Padma, and Teresa and her son Berani. They were perched in a fig tree, spending time together.

The last time our team saw them all at once was almost a year ago. This time, they discovered the six orangutans not far from Camp Lesik in the Kehje Sewen Forest, East Kalimantan.

The three mother-infant pairs enjoying their time together in the fig tree.

The team discovered Lesan and Ayu first. Both were sitting on separate branches. Below them were Sayang and Padma, with Teresa and Berani, all relaxing on nearby branches. Shortly after, Sayang and Padma moved towards a June plum tree, followed by Ayu, with Lesan watching from behind. Sayang and Padma quickly started devouring leaves when Ayu approached the pair, appearing very interested in their activity.

Ayu enjoyed playing with Padma and repeatedly tried to get closer to her, but Padma, the youngest in the group, stayed close to her mother Sayang, never leaving her arms. With her infant clinging onto her, Sayang showed Ayu how to brachiate and shared food with her.

Teresa and son Berani

As Ayu interacted with Sayang and Padma, mum Lesan turned her attention to Teresa and started grooming her. For quite a while, the two mothers took turns grooming one another as Berani sat idly by, watching the two adult females have their moment.

The group eventually dispersed, with Sayang and Padma moving away toward the forest behind the camp, as Lesan, Ayu, Teresa, and Berani headed for the riverbank.

It is heart-warming to observe such moments of togetherness among mother-infant pairs in the forest. We hope this young generation of orangutans will reach independence and live long, healthy lives in the Kehje Sewen Forest!

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