Orang-utans at Sepilok
Sepilok Orang-utan Rehabilitation Centre
Located a short distance from Sandakan, in the North-East of Sabah, it is the largest Orang-utan sanctuary in the world. It is also the scene of an exciting conservation programme. The orang-utans are not kept in captivity, but rather come and go as they please while becoming used to living in the wild again after being held in captivity by various people.
Mother and Baby Orang-utan
The Orang-utan is man’s closest relative, and has been shown to be highly intelligent. The Orang-utans come into the sanctuary to be fed twice a day. Although visitors to the reserve may be disappointed that the Orang-utans are free to come and go as they please, the park wardens are thrilled when an Orang-utan does not come back for food as it generally means that the animal has started to fend for itself. The tourists are, however, certain to be able to see Orang-utans in close proximity, and will be provided with many opportunities to take some good photographs. (be sure to bring along at least 200 ASA film as it can be a little dim at times due to the surrounding jungle)
We are often asked about the possibility of spending time working with the orang-utans. Many people would like to go to Borneo to spend time with the primates. We would suggest that you read everything in this Lonely Planet Thorn Tree bulletin Board post before making such a decision.