Learning to be wild

Staff from the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme giving an orang utan medicine in the Jantho Reintroduction and Quarantine Station in Aceh Besar, Indonesia, yesterday. The station is a training centre for confiscated orang utans that were bei
PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

Staff from the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme giving an orang utan medicine in the Jantho Reintroduction and Quarantine Station in Aceh Besar, Indonesia, yesterday.

The station is a training centre for confiscated orang utans that were being raised as pets and had become unfamiliar with living in the wild.

There, the orang utans are trained before being released into the wild once they are able to survive on their own.

A major problem for orang utans that live closely with humans for extended periods is that they become incapable of feeding themselves and are unable to build nests.

There are fewer than 30,000 orang utans left in Sumatra and Kalimantan.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 22, 2016, with the headline 'Learning to be wild'. Print Edition | Subscribe