Jungle School: Clara and Clarita

Orangutan Jungle School is a documentary series about a unique forest school in Borneo that prepares hundreds of young orphaned orangutans for a life in the wild.

The producers have provided Newsroom with some short videos that give a fascinating insight into the world of these endangered orangutans.

At Orangutan Jungle School the older students (9-15 years old) who have graduated classes in the forest usually end up at the pre-release islands which are kind of like “first year Uni” as they prepare for life in the wild.

Most of the females have contraceptive implants as having babies at this stage is not ideal, but sometimes the implants fail and there are young mum pregnancies. (Females usually give birth in the wild after 14-years and the males take no part in the child-rearing!).

Eleven year old Clara is one of those young mums and her life changes dramatically when her newborn baby Clarita is snatched from her arms by a male orangutan named Rizky on one of the islands.

The staff manages to rescue Clarita from the male and return both her and her mum to the main compound with the hopes of reuniting the infant with her mother. But if Clara doesn’t accept her baby, Clarita will have to be raised as an orphan at the Orangutan Jungle School.

The series has been made by Dunedin’s NHNZ and will screen on Choice TV from January 10 at 7.30pm.

For more information see here

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