Orangutan Who Was Kept Chained in a Crate is Now Making Friends in the Forest

Rescuers are celebrating some amazing progress for Amy, an orangutan who was recently rescued from a horrible and lonely life.

Amyhad been kept chained by the neck inside a dark crate that had been covered in sheets of metal, leaving her with nothing of the world outside, and little comfort inside other than a rag she was clutching when rescuers arrived.In March, International Animal Rescue (IAR) was alerted about her plight by a local group and quickly mobilized a team to save her.

Her living conditions took a toll on her both physically and mentally, but she was taken to IARs orangutan rescue center where caretakers provided her with everything she needed to start recovering.

She was kept in quarantine at first, where her rescuers said she spent the first few days in her enclosure sitting in a hammock and staring vacantly into space, but she started showing signs of improvement and was soon moved to a cage where she could see other orangutans and the outside world.

According to IAR, she learned fast and eagerly accepted new foods. When she was unsure about trying something new, she would check to see if others were trying it, and quickly settled in. Next she was moved to a cage right next to another orangutan.

“Amys response was quite amazing. She was curious about her new neighbour and tried to reach through and touch her. She clearly wanted to play with her new friend. She enjoyed all the enrichment we gave her and ate everything she was offered. She loves not only banana, orange and papaya but also cassava, cucumber, pineapple, watermelon and many more! said Heribertus Suciadi, a member of IAR’s team in Indonesia.

After a few weeks, her rescuers decided it was time for her to continue her journey to a new home in the forest, where she would be able to have direct contact with other orangutans who are also undergoing rehabilitation.

“The moving day was quite extraordinary. Amy doesn’t like people to touch her and so she walked to Setrum Island unaided but with the team there to guide her. She paused for a while to look around her and seemed fascinated by the trees. When she finally reached Setrum Island, Amys new friends were already waiting for her. They tried to smell her and some of them touched her inquisitively. Amy didn’t mind at all: this was a new beginning for her and she was so happy to meet her new friends. She even started to climb a tree and slowly explore the forest. She seemed to have no problem moving around. She was just enjoying her new-found freedom out in the forest where she belongs,” added Suciadi.

Despite the trauma of her past, her progress has her caretakers hopeful she will be able to return to the wild.

It is so uplifting to see Amy socialising with others of her own kind after spending so long chained up and alone. Its a real testimony to her physical and mental resilience that she is adjusting so well to her new environment and taking so many new experiences in her stride. The team will continue to monitor her progress in the weeks and months ahead and assess her chances of one day returning to her rightful home in the rainforest,” said Alan Knight OBE, Chief Executive of IAR.

That would be an amazing outcome for Amy, and good news for her species. Sadly for Bornean orangutans, who are now Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, they continue to face a host of threats to their survival ranging from losing their forest homes to fires and development to conflicts with us and being taken from the wild for the pet trade. According to IAR, a gun pellet was found lodged in Amys armpit, which suggests that she was hurt when her mother was killed trying to protect her.

Hopefully Amy will continue to successfully recover from her past, and IAR’s work helping those in need, and educating local communities about the threats orangutans face, why they should never be kept as pets , and how to get them help will continue to make a difference.

For more updates and info on how to help, check out International Animal Rescue.

Photo credit: Thinkstock


Jane M
Jane M1 days ago

Wonderful story loved dearly Thank you!!!!

Joy T
Joy T4 days ago

Yay, Amy!

joan silaco
joan silaco7 days ago

thank you

Georgina Elizab M

Thank you

Marty P
Marty P9 days ago

We are trying to raise funds to rescue 80 starving bears from a zoo in Armenia. It Is Supposed To be against the law to hold bears captive in Armenia but the government won't take action. It is a heartbreaking situation so if our care2 members can donate any amount it would be great as no amount is too small. Thank You
http://wildlife rescue.am/en/help-the-bears/

Karen K
Karen K9 days ago

So glad she was rescued and rehabilitated.

Carl R
Carl R9 days ago


Nicole H
Nicole H9 days ago

Heartbreaking story and tears coming to my eyes. Yes, I am an emotional animal. So happy that this orangutan will only have suffered for a limited number of years, and is now finding her own personality, and is able to cope with her new friends. Most certainly she will shortly thrive in the wild, find a mate and have a family of her own. So beautiful !! Each day, we should have such a story to read. But not all animals are so lucky to be saved while still being young, and orangutans adapt very easily as well. They are very social animals, utterly clever, and adore playing around with each other. And they are so CUTE.... Their appearance is not the most attractive but their facial expressions are invaluable. And they are also very eager to learn all kind of things. They just look how other members of her group are attacking some problems, and they immediately try it as well. Needless to add, they are one of my favorites. I simply love them !! Amy, I wish you a loving family, a lot of healthy children, and a beautiful life in the woods where you belong !!!

Carl R
Carl R10 days ago


Margarete Salah
Margarete Salah10 days ago

Heartbreaking! Sometimes it is hard to read those stories. At least this one has a good outcome.