SABAH 沙巴   .   SEPILOK ORANG UTAN REHABILITATION CENTRE

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In 1964, Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre was built to put back orphaned apes to the wild. Forestry Department's wildlife section administered the centre and in 1988 it was upgraded as a sector under Ministry of Tourism and Environmental Development. The entire administration as well as management was provided to the latest Wildlife Department of Sabah.

The objectives of this project have developed recently. While the Orangutan rehabilitation remains the main goal at Sepilok, the latest goals count in public education regarding assistance, research and conservation of other endangered species like captive breeding of endangered and rare rhinoceros.

At present it is under the management of over 37 staff counting in a Wildlife Officer who is as well the IC of the centre, general workers, wildlife rangers and a veterinary doctor.

The centre holds an animal clinic, enclosures for different animals like the rhinoceros, quarantine area, offices for wildlife personnel, information centre as well as a reception centre.

Sepilok is popular for their orangutan rehabilitation project and has stimulated a larger local as well as international awareness of security regulations for endangered species as well as the Centre has ended up in a boost in confiscation and detection of illegally held confined animals.

As a young orangutan is kept as pet or orphaned, it is not able to survive in its natural habitat independently and majority of its survival varies on acquired skills which it attains from its mother in the initial 5 �C 6 years of existence. At Sepilok, the orangutans are trained to survive independently in their natural habitat. This procedure can be somewhat extensive counting in a 'kindergarten' controlled and enclosed areas and in its final stage is the open forest reserve where orangutans are free to roam.

In the Sepilok's forest reserve, the visitors can have the opportunity to witness orangutans. The most excellent time to see them is throughout feeding periods at 10am and 2:30pm at their feeding platform. At other periods, admission to the reserve is not permitted to lessen the disturbance of the animals.

The trail towards the platform is a plank-walkway fitting for the entire visitors and you can see the rare and enormous rainforest trees. If you look at the canopy closely, you will see orangutan's nests and possibly you can come across a curious ape as you head to the platform. Always remember to not touch the animals.
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