By Mark Rusli
These were probably our last few enrichments for Suria, before we leave on Friday! We added more firehose to her den, because Suria really loves climbing - sometimes she stays on the highest swing and won’t come down for a few hours. It feels like a den constructed for primates!
To bolster and encourage Suria’s climbing, we’ve been suspending various food-based enrichments at the top of her den. The most successful one had to be this green ball with a hole on one side. We stuffed loads of jackfruits in it, and it lasted TWO DAYS!! On Day Two we came in the morning to find Suria still furiously trying to claw a few remaining pieces of jackfruit out. Wonder if she even slept at all! It’s fascinating watching Suria balance so effortlessly on the swing, almost like a human child. (:
Wednesday, June 9th 2010 10:48pm
It’s 2.45pm. I have approximately an hour and a half left in the Sepilok grounds. In the morning, Amanda and I did husbandry, then rushed down for the orang utan feeding at 10.30am. At 1.00pm we had lunch, expecting a memorable last meal in the cafeteria. We did have one. Not in an ideal way, but it was memorable. Definitely memorable.
Soon I’ll be going back to see the bears for one last time. We bought loads of treats for them: fruits mostly, and packets of dried papaya and mango. Going to stuff their faces. I pity whoever’s doing husbandry tomorrow. Always wanted to say that, but the past few weeks if I did say it, I’ll be kicking myself the next morning. I can finally say it, and mean it. Probably not feel good for the people cleaning tomorrow, but oh well.
I pity whoever’s doing husbandry tomorrow.
There is so much to be done, and the urgency’s only settling in during my last hours here in Borneo. In 5 minutes I will walk back heavily to the bear house. I will soak in the scent of sun bear poop and relish it. I will scratch Keningau’s nose, feel Jelita’s paws, pat Chong on his fat bum. I will watch Cerah wrinkle and scrunch her nose. I will give Suria an extra snakefruit.
And I will enjoy every second of it, and remember these moments for the rest of my life unless I lose my memory. For they will constantly signify and remind me why the sun bears need saving. And why I’m here in the first place.
The next time I talk to people about sun bears, I will remember the ones I’ve met, who’ve made an impact on me, even if it was a very short stay. And I will mean every single thing I say.
~ Mark Rusli