Baimah arrived at the Samboja Lestari Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre in September 2022. At 15 kilograms, she was severely overweight for a two-year-old orangutan. Find out how she has improved.
Before her rescue, a local villager had kept the poor little infant as a pet for around 18 months after allegedly finding her without a mother. She fed the orangutan milk, mangosteen and sometimes rice, regularly bathed her in warm water, and even dressed her like a human child.
The BOS vet team immediately placed Baimah on a diet to get her back to a healthy weight. Due to her traumatic past and weight, Baimah did not move around much when she first arrived, even when playing in Forest School or the playground outside the Baby House. In fact, she frequently fell asleep from exhaustion in the tops of the trees in Forest School.
She quickly became friends with two other young orangutans in her group, Galaxy and Feruza. A rather independent individual, Baimah will happily travel alone to and from Forest School daily, refusing to be carried by a surrogate mother.
Water-rich fruits and enrichment
Baimah enjoys the fruits given to her while on the diet. Her caretakers more frequently feed her fruits with a high water content, such as dragon fruit, watermelon, and pineapple. Furthermore, the surrogate mothers give her enrichment items to help train her in the skills she will need to find and obtain her own food.
Each young orangutan in her group usually receives 300 millilitres of supplementary milk. However, the vets adjusted Baimah’s ration of milk to be about two-thirds the portion of her peers. The diet is ultimately working, as Baimah has gradually lost weight and is now down to 13.8 kilograms.
When Baimah arrived at Samboja Lestari, she was struggling to breathe properly due to her excessive weight. It turned out that the reason behind this was her previous diet of strawberry-flavoured milk, which was loaded with sugar, during her captivity. However, with the help of her dedicated surrogate mother, Baimah slowly but surely adjusted to drinking a healthy milk formula.
It’s now only a matter of waiting to see how this lovely female will develop as her weight is returning to a healthy range for an orangutan her age.
You can do it, Baimah! We are with you every step of the way.