Orangutan shot over 100 times with airgun

2012-10-25 16:45

Jakarta - An endangered orangutan on Borneo island has survived after being shot more than 100 times with an air rifle, Indonesian officials said on Thursday.

The female ape, whom conservationists have named Aan, has gone blind in one eye and sustained serious wounds across her body after being repeatedly hit with pellets on the Indonesian part of the island.

Conservationists had feared the orangutan, found on an oil palm plantation with 37 pellets lodged in her head and 67 elsewhere in her body, would not survive but officials now believe she has cheated death.

"She is fighting hard. She was badly wounded, but she's starting to eat so we're hopeful," Hartono, head of the local government conservation agency, said.

Hearing, sight fears

But he fears she may lose the sight in her remaining eye and her hearing could be affected.

"We may be able to release her, but we're worried about her chances of survival with no sight and poor hearing," said Hartono, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.

The agency said it did not know who shot the ape, which is now in a rehabilitation centre in the Borneo jungle. But the past year has seen several shootings of orangutans on plantations as a form of pest control.

Rangers from the agency rescued Aan on 10 October after she was spotted with serious injuries in Central Kalimantan province. They removed all 104 pellets from her body with the help of the UK-based Orangutan Foundation.

The foundation had feared she would die from infections caused by the serious wounds to her head, as well as near her heart, lungs and eyes.

Other attacks

Four men were sentenced to eight months' jail in April for shooting and beating to death three orangutans and long-nosed monkeys in East Kalimantan in Indonesian Borneo.

In that case, employees at a Malaysian-owned palm oil company had paid them to drive the orangutans away. Borneo is shared between Indonesia and Malaysia.

Experts believe there are about 50 000 to 60 000 of the two species of orangutans left in the wild, 80% of them in Indonesia and the rest in Malaysia.

They are faced with extinction from poaching and the rapid destruction of their forest habitat, mainly to create palm oil plantations.

  • frank.crane.180 - 2012-10-25 17:05

    So sad

  • shirley.steenkamp - 2012-10-25 17:19

    MANKIND SAY THEY ARE SUPERIOR!!! They are cruel distructive and unfeeling! There is NO logical reason for behaviour like this! Its sadistic and pointless. Karma must repay them a million times over!

      jcadman3 - 2012-10-26 13:38

      I'll say it again - I'm ashamed to call myself human!

  • martyfx - 2012-10-25 17:27

    Treat the criminal with the same punishment if caught. Also make sure the pellets are laced with arsenic. Sad that humans have the capacity to act like this.

  • delish7564 - 2012-10-25 17:31

    Anybody who does this to an animal has no humanity or compassion....wonder how they treat other humans. Bastards!!!!!!

  • PeterJJhb - 2012-10-25 21:04

    Frekken idiots. People who harm animals are evil.

  • marc.hugo.75 - 2012-10-26 00:22

    Indonesians, Borneans, Javanese, Sarawakis, Pilipinos are collectively humanoid scum - the same as the east-Asian mainland with one or two isolated exceptions that include the majority of the Japanese. They breed as if there is no tomorrow and pillage/exploit/plunder/destroy anything they can find - whether marine or landward.

      irene.laskowskadebeer - 2012-10-26 07:40

      Hold on your horses, be careful to generalise like that mr. They are harvesting palm oil because of western demand for cheap oil, sure hope none of your cookies, snacks or breads contain palm oil... *checks ingredients labels* hmmm yeah looks like you will have to think twice now before shoving anything in your mouth...wouldnt wanna be a hipocrite do you? Ps, i actuall boycott all palm oil products i can so i know how difficult it is to buy 'ethical' food. I agree with the sentiment to an extent, but fact is most races of people are disgustingly cruel to animals.

  • hengu.willemse - 2012-10-26 06:25

    i'll never buy Indonesian / Malaysian palm oil!

  • andrew.arnesen - 2012-10-26 07:09

    This is f*cking disgusting! Words fail me.

  • coenraad.vanderwesthuizen.3 - 2012-10-26 09:07

    Sick busturds! Serious humanity FAIL

  • ben.louw.5 - 2012-10-26 09:30

    Goooo Humans! *facepalm

  • jody.beggs - 2012-10-26 15:47

    No hope for the human race , if we "believe" we are at the top of the pyramid (i.e. dominion over) then we are doomed. We need to embrace the little bit of nature left and protect the planet from Religious child indoctrination and improve the lack of scientific logic over supernatural fear. Damn the man.

      andrew.arnesen - 2012-10-27 11:00

      Yeah, the bible says 'dominion' which is a caretaker role. Most of these idiots have interpreted that as 'domination'... :(

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