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Meet Orangutans in the River

Orangutan Tour in Tanjung Puting now is quite popular, well-known of traveler around the world. Visitor to this National Park is increasing year by year. Laid on Central Kalimantan, Indonesian Borneo, this park is accessable by plane and boat. Have you visited Tanjung Puting National Park?  This park is an settlement of Orangutan. I guess that you still remember when first entrance to the National Park gateway by boating at Sekonyer River. The natural habitat of legendary old forest, peat swamp ecosystem, Nypha vegetation, Proboscis monkey, Long tailed macaque, Sundaic silvered langur and many birds life which across the river may be still on your memories. Now you’ll see why  UNESCO put this park on  The World Heritage-Man and the Biosphere.
Boating up to Sekonyer River, adventuring on Tanjung Puting National Park, you can see the live show of endangered species Man of the Forest. They live in their habitat, tropical rainforest. If you see a pile of branches in the top of tree or around canopy, there is the place where they sleep at night. Orangutan build a new nest everyday, even some rebuilding or repair their old nest with special reason. If they found any fruit tree that they love to eat, stay many days around the tree is preferred.

That is particular experience for me to see a dozens of Red Head in the Sekonyer-river banks. So easy to see them. I brake my houseboat/kelotok and getting closer to watch them. Amazing, that is a beautiful creation. Young Orangutan takes fruits of Nyatuh. Lovely. They invite me on visual communication even I can’t understand anymore. Maybe it feel displeasure with us, or maybe want to offer us a delicious fruit. Nyatuh is one of local tree that any kind of monkeys love it very much. I have tasted that fruit, sweet and soft, melted on my mouth.

Especially in fruit season, may you see many monkeys in the river banks. They enjoying the wild fruits. It normally happen in the end of dry season and beginning of rainy season. November to January is a fruit season in tropical rain forest, Indonesia. A bunch of wild fruits may you can enjoy during your trekking to deep to the jungle.

Sekonyer River is a border to separate between protected and non-protected area. I have seen a dozen orangutans live in outside of National Park. Many Red Apes in the river banks, may a good for tourist, but I think something happen with them. I hope, they move to another area for a reason. Food is one of rational reason. How about shelter, I mean, an habitat to provide for their life. If the wildlife moves cause human activity or habitat disturbances, especially in the buffer zone of national park, it will be a problem. Now, land use changing and deforestation cause of plantation or forest fire are threatened of the biodiversity in Indonesian Borneo.

Kiss squeak
When our houseboat/kelotok was getting closer to the Orangutan, I actually know that they did not pleasure with us. They makes kiss-noisy to drive us out. We called a kiss squeak, an vocalization that made when the monkey become annoyed. It is produced by pursing their lips together and making a smacking sound. This kiss-squeak sound is a defensive mechanism developed to trick intruders or predators into thinking the individual is bigger than he or she really is. If you meet orangutans and they make a kiss squeak, better to leave soon. In another case, kiss squeak is a quick indicator to distinguished between wild orangutan and rehabilitan.

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