Corridor for Orangutan: A Multi-party Collaboration to Conserve Bornean Orangutan in Wehea


Wehea is one of the important Bornean orangutan conservation areas in East Kalimantan. Only 2000 orangutans are left in this region. Settlements, plantations, and mining have made orangutan habitat to be fragmented. Orangutans live in isolation and separated from each other, making them difficult to roam and get food. Orangutan requires uninterrupted forest cover to explore the area while searching for fruits . Crossing two separated forests can place orangutans in danger from being caught or hit by a vehicle.

Creating corridors linking forest fragments will guarantee a safer passage for orangutans to roam, thereby increasing their chances for survival. Recognizing the importance of this corridor, East Kalimantan Province Environment Office , East Kalimantan Natural Resources Conservation Agency (BKSDA), East Kutai Regency, and TNC involved others such as the Wehea Customary Institution, PT. Swarkarsa Sinar Sentosa Group and Ecositrop Samarinda to establish a collaborative effort.

This important agreement was reached during a workshop that took place in early December 2014 at the East Kalimantan Environmental Agency Office. It was agreed that a 500-meter wide corridor will be created that guarantees orangutan can obtain food along the corridor and are able to move from one forest area to another without putting them in danger. This is a major step in the conservation of orangutans that involves multiple parties. Coordination will be formalized in the form of a forum or institution regulated through a regency decree or district regulation. Joint financing of this effort by the government, the private sector, and others are also very important.

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