Citrawan had made great progress at forest school in the Bukit Tigapuluh jungle up until April 2020. She was traveling and foraging actively in the canopy for various forest foods. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has meant lots of changes for both orangutans and staff at the orangutan rescue and rehabilitation centres throughout Indonesia. Staff are having limited contact with orangutans and forest school is currently not taking place. All orangutans have had to remain in the pre-release enclosures for the last few months in an effort to protect them as much as possible from COVID-19.
It is vital during this challenging time, that both the mental and physical health of orangutans at care centres is of the highest priority. Orangutans that can no longer attend Forest School are receiving extra enrichment to keep them busy in their enclosures. Sourcing natural forest food items is especially important so the orangutans can continue to become exposed and accustomed to a variety of food sources they can access in the forest. These include various fruits, leaves, stem, flowers, cambium, and termites.
Citrawan’s solid jungle skills have helped her master the many enrichment items on offer, especially the natural enrichment that the orangutan keepers collect daily including forest fruits, stems and leaves. The staff have also provided many termite nests so Citrawan and the other orangutans can improve their technique with eating this protein rich food source. Citrawan has improved her termite eating skills however sometimes she will just play with the termite nests and throw them around. Other young orangutans in the enclosures have learnt from Citrawan during the extended time in the enclosures.
It is fantastic to see that Citrawan is coping well with the current situation and it is very much hoped that she can soon put her jungle skills back to use.