Fire Appeal - Save Tuanan Orangutans

$32,186 of $32k goal

Raised by 480 people in 18 months
No Longer Accepting Donations
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This year is projected to be one of the worst on record for forest fires in Indonesia.  NASA reports that close to 8,000 fires have ignited in the forests and peatlands of Borneo, and some predict that this year’s El Niño weather cycle will continue into next spring, potentially matching the record-setting disaster experienced during the fires of 1997-1998.  Deadly particulates from the fires and the resulting smoke are threatening the health of people throughout SE Asia and also the wildlife in this region, including the endangered orangutan. The Tuanan Orangutan Research Project, run as a collaboration between Universitas Nasional Jakarta, University of Zurich, Rutgers University, and the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation, is located along the Kapuas River in the Mawas Conservation Area. This area holds one of the largest populations of wild orangutans in the world and is isolated from major cities in the region.  We have been studying orangutan behavior, ecology and health in this region since 2003  and have accumulated over 50,000 hours of observational data collected by an international team of scientists (information regarding our projects can be found at the following pages:

http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~ev140/TORP/Welcome.html
http://www.aim.uzh.ch/research/orangutannetwork/tuananorangutanresearchproject.html  http://peatland.rutgers.edu

Because of our isolation and the government's need to allocate resources to the more immediate threats to human health and safety in urban areas, it is very difficult for the regional government to deploy fire patrol teams to this region, and thus we primarily rely on people from the nearby villages along the Kapuas River working together with our research team to monitor and fight fires in this area.

The fires are currently active just south of our research area and are quickly moving northwards. We are working closely with local communities to mobilize firefighting teams, but resources are extremely limited in the face of this growing imminent threat. We desperately need your support to save this valuable peatland forest and the critical habitat it provides for orangutans. A small donation goes a long way, and in this crisis situation, every dollar counts. Your donation will contribute directly to supporting the fire fighting activities currently underway.


BUDGET

Fire patrol team salary (20 people for 20 days):  $5000
Logistics for team (food and water): $2584
Masks and safety equipment:  $300
Fire hoses and nozzles (4):  $267
Water pump (1): $916
Gas for patrol boats: $300
Water-tank backpacks (3): $600
Addition logistics to last us until November 15, 2015 (food, water, equipment, and fuel): $15,000 
Installation of new hydrants in study area: $7,000

TOTAL: $32,000





Smoke in the forest at Tuanan Orangutan research Project (TORP). Photo by Wendy Erb.



Tuanan assistant collects data on orangutans and monitors fires. Photo by Wendy Erb.

The forest before the fires. Photo by Tim Laman.
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Update 21
Posted by Erin Vogel
17 months ago
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1
We are back following orangutans! Dr. Wendy Erb, who has been fighting the fires for over a month, has returned to monitoring the orangutans. Here is Wendy along the boardwalk with Niko, who decided to take a nap on the boardwalk. Niko is an extraordinary orangutan who really likes the boardwalk.....you can still see smoke but it is much clearer now thanks to all of your donations!!!! Thank you!
Niko takes a nap - on the boardwalk!
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Update 20
Posted by Erin Vogel
17 months ago
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Dear friends and family,

We are not out of the danger zone yet but your donations are supporting our team and we are so grateful! I spoke to our managers last night, and Wendy told me they estimate we have lost roughly 88 hectares of the study grid in the north, although with the fires still going on they can't do a full monitor. They are still patrolling and fighting the fires. We are so proud of our amazing team! We are working with BOSF to put in new hydrants throughout the study grid as well so we can better fight fires in the future. Thank you!
trying to find fruit in the burnt forest
fires along he edge of the forest
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Update 19
Posted by Erin Vogel
17 months ago
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THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HELPING US REACH OUR FUNDING GOAL FOR TUANAN FIRES!

If you still have funds to donate and want to help, please consider donating to the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation. We work very closely with BOSF in Tuanan as a team. BOSF also runs Nyaru menteng and they are now dealing with all of the orangutans who have been forced out of the forests because of the fires. They desperately need your help to pay for the treatment of these malnourished and injured orangutans - who once healed can be relocated to forests. My graduate students Liz Ballare and Didik Prasetyo are working with BOSF NM vets to monitor the health of these individuals and quantify the effects of fires on orangutan health. Please - BOSF needs your help to bring these displaced orangutans back to their home! You can donate here
http://orangutan.or.id/our-amazing-medical-team-rescuing-o…/ or here for BOSF http://donation.orangutan.or.id/
THANK YOU!!!!!
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Update 18
Posted by Erin Vogel
17 months ago
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Dear Friends and Family,

WE HAVE REACHED OUR GOAL BECAUSE OF YOU!

We are so grateful and overwhelmed by your very generous donations. It is amazing how everyone, friends, family, colleagues, past researchers from Tuanan, people who care about orangutans and their habitat, and people who just care about life have supported us.

While the fires are still raging, we have raised enough funds for the moment. If this changes, we will let you know. We have enough funds to pay the salaries for another month, buy the equipment we need to fight the fires, and pay someone to add more hydrants to the study grid and beyond. We will continue to keep you posted! Thank you so much for your help and your kind words.

Best wishes
The Tuanan Orangutan Research Project
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Read a Previous Update
Adrian Fox Dunn
18 months ago
3
3

Thank you for the update. It is both a relief to hear more help is coming to fight the fires, and also dismaying to know this may continue to be a bad fire year. Thanks for working to save the orangutan habitat.

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Colleen West
18 months ago
2
2

Erin, thank you for your updates. Can you please let me know if the researchers have evacuated and are safe?

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$32,186 of $32k goal

Raised by 480 people in 18 months
No Longer Accepting Donations
 Share on Facebook
Created October 8, 2015
$100
Marin D'Acquisto
17 months ago
$200
Anonymous
17 months ago
$2,150
NGO Lebensraum Regenwald e.V.
17 months ago
1
1

Please save the forest. The best wishes also from Dr. Lohr, the leader of our partnerorganization "Faszination Regenwald e.V."

LP
$15
Leigh Powell
17 months ago
AM
$50
Angela Martin
17 months ago
GT
$100
Gail Tracy
17 months ago

So sorry to hear about this, Erin. Hope the fires are under control soon and the orangutan population is unharmed.

$20
Melissa Boyd
17 months ago
AH
$10
Annikki heinemann
18 months ago
DB
$100
Douglas Blair
18 months ago
AC
$100
Antonia Coenen
18 months ago
Adrian Fox Dunn
18 months ago
3
3

Thank you for the update. It is both a relief to hear more help is coming to fight the fires, and also dismaying to know this may continue to be a bad fire year. Thanks for working to save the orangutan habitat.

+ Read More
Colleen West
18 months ago
2
2

Erin, thank you for your updates. Can you please let me know if the researchers have evacuated and are safe?

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