This orangutan was rescued as she clung to the last remaining tree in her forest. Bulldozers were clearing another huge swath of Indonesian rain forest for yet another palm plantation. [readon]
The rescue was one of a series of rescue missions by International Animal Rescue (IAR) as they race to save as many as possible of the last remaining orangs. Soon there will be no forest – and none of these wonderful great apes.
According to the Daily Mail:
The frightened animals were desperately searching for food and had even resorted to eating bark from the trees they were trying to hide in.
One female orangutan was heavily pregnant, while another, who was still lactating, is thought to have had her baby snatched to be sold as a pet or killed before the rescue team arrived.
The final female was found with her scared baby clinging to her back and both were very thin from malnutrition.
The orangutans are darted with tranquilizer guns, caught in a net as they fall, and then hurried to the IAR rescue center.
Here’s a 12-minute video of some of the rescue operations. (Note: Some of the footage is obviously troubling.)
One thing you can do: Always check the label on food products and cosmetics. If it says “palm oil”, skip it.
P.S. I was wondering about other products that may be related to the palm oil industry, so I called the So Delicious company to check if their dairy free, coconut-based milks, creamers and frozen desserts come from those same palms. They assured me that they don’t, and referred me to their sustainability page.