There are about 40 to 50 orangutans in the actual Forest School – all aged four to eight. In Forest School demands are made on the orangutans. It is at this age that they, in nature, would begin to explore the trees on their own – but always close to their mother. For this reason there are more technicians at Forest School and fewer of the caring babysitters.
Food with obstacles
In Forest School food is served to the orangutans as they would find it in the wild. Consequently they must ingeniously find ways to open watermelons and pineapples. Babysitters and technicians teach the orangutans how to find food that suits the season, so they will be able to cope on their own both during the dry and rainy season in nature.
Before an orangutan can pass the Forest School examination, it must be able to build nests, find food in the forest, and identify natural enemies. It must of course also be adept at climbing the 15-20 metre high trees. When the orangutans master these skills, they have passed the exam and can move on to Island University.
Do you remember BBC's Orangutan Diary?
Here you will find some of the most popular scenes from the forest school of Nyaru Menteng.