Rescued five-year-old orangutan Kukur learns to climb again


Rescued five-year-old orangutan Kukur learns to climb again after developing fear of heights while kept locked up as family pet

  • Kukur the five-year-old orangutan was rescued from a hut in west Borneo
  • He was kept as a pet and tied up by his owner with a rope around his neck
  • Carers say life in captivity many apes like Kukur develop a fear of heights 

A rescued orangutan that developed a fear of heights after being locked up in captivity has learned to climb again.

Kukur is just five years old and was rescued from a hut in west Borneo where he was being kept tied up as an illegal pet.

He has now started the rehabilitation process as he learns to climb properly. Carers say life in captivity many apes like Kukur develop a fear of heights.

Timid at first, Kukur wanted to stay close to his keeper and was reluctant to climb his tree.

Kukur the five-years-old rescued orangutan has learned to climb again after developing a fear of heights while being locked up in captivity in west Borneo

He has now started the rehabilitation process as he learns to climb properly. Carers say life in captivity many apes like Kukur develop a fear of heights

He has now started the rehabilitation process as he learns to climb properly. Carers say life in captivity many apes like Kukur develop a fear of heights

But when some other orangutans came over to play he quickly gained confidence.

Kurkur was rescued by non-profit International Animal Rescue (IAR) in October last year.

His captive keeper claimed to have found the young primate in the forest while he was out farming.

He said he felt sorry for him so brought him home to Senduruhan Village, Ketapang, West Borneo.

He kept him tied up with a rope around his neck, incarcerated in a small hut in the woods living with the owner’s family and their pet dogs, chickens and pigs.

Kukur has learnt to build nests like a wild orangutan and was paired with another ape, Limpang, so he would have a friend before his first day at 'forest school'

Kukur has learnt to build nests like a wild orangutan and was paired with another ape, Limpang, so he would have a friend before his first day at ‘forest school’

Timid at first, Kukur wanted to stay close to his keeper and was reluctant to climb his tree

Timid at first, Kukur wanted to stay close to his keeper and was reluctant to climb his tree

He was fed with human food, like instant noodles and coffee, as well as fruit.

After the rescue mission, conducted with the Natural Resources Conservation Agency, Kukur spent eight weeks in quarantine at the IAR Orangutan Conservation Centre.

During that time, Kukur was able to build nests like a wild orangutan and was paired with another ape, Limpang, so he would have a friend before his first day at ‘forest school’.

Despite getting a little jealous of Limpang’s attention, Kukur socialised well with his new pal that even led to improvements with his nestbuilding.

Kukur has now joined other primates in a rehabilitation centre on Setrum Island, Ketapang, where he will learn to socialise more.

Kukur was able to build nests like a wild orangutan and was paired with another ape, Limpang, so he would have a friend before his first day at 'forest school'

Kukur was able to build nests like a wild orangutan and was paired with another ape, Limpang, so he would have a friend before his first day at ‘forest school’

Kukur has now joined other orangutans in a rehabilitation centre on Setrum Island, Ketapang, where he will learn to socialise more

Kukur has now joined other orangutans in a rehabilitation centre on Setrum Island, Ketapang, where he will learn to socialise more

Alan Knight OBE, IAR Chief Executive, said: ‘Kukur has made a very encouraging start to his journey through rehabilitation.

‘We can’t replace his mother but, with coaxing from the keepers and, more importantly, the company of other young orangutans, he is already starting to learn the ropes and develop the skills he will need in order to return to his rightful home in the forest.

‘Orangutans are 90 per cent arboreal – they spend nearly all their time up in the trees foraging for food.

‘So it is vital that Kukur learns to climb and move confidently off the ground. That is lesson one!

‘This is a great example of our rehabilitation programme in action. It can take years for orangutans like Kukur to acquire all the behaviours they will need in order to survive in the wild.

‘It requires a huge investment of time and money to prepare these orangutans for release.

‘We are so grateful to everyone who supports this lifesaving work which is helping to bring orangutans back from the brink of extinction.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk