Orangutans are also highly curious beings. Even though our Post-Release-Monitoring team is used to our red cousins’ inquisitive nature, a recent observation took them by surprise.
Our PRM team at Camp Nles Mamse woke up to gloomy skies looming over the camp. To the west of the camp, an old, non-functional car sits undisturbed, day in and day out, weathering down in the tropical humidly. Usually a familiar sight for the team, the technicians were shocked to see an orangutan with cheek pads suddenly poke his head out the car door.
Last spotted in 2022
Our startled PRM team carefully examined the orangutan and identified him as Agus. They last saw the male orangutan in 2022 when he was relocated to the north side of Camp Nles Mamse. Agus, whom the team had not seen in a long time, was an unexpected sight for our team and was now analysing the out-of-commission vehicle with a fierce intensity.
Orangutans are highly curious beings, as illustrated by Agus sitting inside the old car and examining everything held within. The old car doesn’t have door locks, so it is no surprise that Agus could enter the vehicle early in the morning before the team woke up.
Curiosity makes hungry
Agus didn’t do much but sit inside the car and stare at the camp from afar. He did not act aggressively or damage the old automobile. As other PRM team members awoke with the sunrise, Agus opted to return to the forest, probably to seek food to satisfy his hunger since he had already satisfied his curiosity.
Orangutans are incredibly intelligent and have phenomenal memories. They can remember past travel routes through trees as well as the contours of the terrain. As a result, it’s not surprising that our Post-Release Monitoring team in the Kehje Sewen Forest knows where to find specific rehabilitated orangutans. However, on rare occasions, we will go months, or even years, without spotting specific individuals. Therefore, our rangers were thrilled to finally have seen Agus again, even though in an unexpected setting.