Mother Nature Continues to Challenge Our Team

Constant, heavy rainfall in the Kehje Sewen Forest over the past few weeks caused severe flash flooding that washed away our Post Release Monitoring Team’s boat (read the complete story here). Nature has kept the challenges coming, with another storm striking the area recently and, once again, causing more flooding.

The latest downpour and ensuing floodwaters damaged equipment and machinery, and was so powerful that it flipped our PRM team’s 4×4 patrol vehicle on its side. Luckily, the team were prepared after the last flash flood hit, and had firmly secured the boat to prevent it from being carried away again. Everyone was on high alert, anticipating the worst-case scenario.

The PRM patrol vehicle flipped on its side

Our team woke the following morning to the sun shining on the Kehje Sewen Forest, and immediately surveyed the aftermath of the previous night’s flooding. Landslides were found in more than eight different locations around Nles Mamse Camp, and the trails were blocked by fallen trees in several places.

The PRM team jumped into action to begin clearing the trails, and recover equipment buried under landslides. The team had to open up a new patrol trail, and find enough clean water to cover the camp’s daily consumption.

Landslides near the camp

Damage was not limited to the camp area alone – this time, the rain had also caused havoc in other locations, including the roads from Pelangsiran to the north of the Kehje Sewen and to Muara Wahau.

Condition of road from camp to Pelangsiran

Despite the flooding, and the disorder it caused, our team members are determined to forge on, remain positive, and ready themselves for possible repeat onslaughts. We hope that our released orangutans in the Kehje Sewen Forest share the same determination to survive and adapt to this wild and often unpredictable environment!

Text by: PRM team in Nles Mamse Camp, Kehje Sewen Forest

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