Desperate Orangutan Reaches Out To Hold His Rescuer's Hand
Countless animals have been left displaced and distressed in recent months as devastating wildfires continue to ravage their home in Indonesia. But amid all the pain and uncertainty that's been wrought, there are people working each day to make sure not all hope is lost.
Earlier this month, volunteers from International Animal Rescue (IAR) intervened to save one of the fire's hardest-hit victims - a desperate male orangutan, named Jambu, who had been struggling to stay alive while the flames ravaged the world around him.
Photos from the rescue show the dramatic moment Jambu knew he was finally safe, reaching out to touch one of his rescuer's hands.
Planation workers had alerted IAR about Jambu after he was seen stranded there, unable to find safety or food in the burnt-out forest where he once lived. He had taken refuge high in a tree, but rescuers were able to coax him lower down where he could be anesthetized.
Jambu was given a physical examination and promptly treated for a small injury he had suffered on his face.
Afterward, Jambu was relocated to IAR's rescue center, where the group is caring for him until they can find a suitable place to set him free once again.
Ultimately, despite all he'd been through leading up to his rescue, this orangutan is one of the fortunate ones - lucky to have been found in time by people who care about his well-being. Their work, however, is far from over.
"The heartbreaking sight of stranded orangutans, especially large males, is becoming all to familiar for our team in Indonesia," IAR wrote on Facebook. "They are working around the clock to rescue as many as they can before they are left to starve and die or get shot by villagers or farmers."