Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Orang Utan Rehabilitation and Sun Bear Conservation Centres in Sepilok, Sabah

"If you like a flower, you pluck it. If you love a flower, you water it"

When someone takes a baby orangutan from its natural habitat or keep a sun bear as pet on the pretext of 'loving nature', it is simply despicable. For if you truely love nature, you will let them thrive happily, freely and naturally. At Sepilok Sabah, we met people who define the meaning of love for these orangutans and sun bears.

While you are in the Sepilok area, take the opportunity to visit:
4. Rainforest Discovery Centre for a little walk

Scroll down till the end to know more.

Sepilok Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre

Keeping an orangutan in your home is not cute and is prosecutable. They are the human's closest cousin. Just like us, their young depend heavily on the mother for 7-10 years to learn survival. Should she die due to deforestation or killed so that the baby is kidnaped as pets, the little one has little chance of survival anyway. Because orphaned orangutans has grown to an alarming number, a rehabilitation centre is set up in Sepilok in 1964.

Known as 'the man of the jungle', orangutans share 96.4% of the human DNA and are often marvelled at for their intelligence. They are endemic to Borneo and Sumatra and the only great ape out of Africa. Therefore, whenever you are in Borneo, get yourself bewildred by them. Looking at them through an observation room, I found myself immersed in their antics.

Although this is not a zoo, the public can visit the orangutans at a small cost of RM5. Rehabilitating an orangutan requires RM8000 per year. Donations and volunteers are always welcomed at this centre.

For more information, visit and
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Orangutan at the Sepilok Rehabilitation Centre
Who's the ape?
This place attracts visitors from all around the world
Entry fees that contributes to the orangutans' welfare could be underpriced compared to the efforts by the centre
No items other than the handphone is allowed in the cenre. Which means water bottles and bags are to be kept in lockers. Lockers are free.
Feeding time is 10am and 3pm. Food will be placed on the viewing platform to attract them for a good view.
Other habitants are not rejected from the platform though.
Food on the platform is insufficient for the orangutans. However, mother apes come to get food from the platform when she cannot find enough food in the forest.
Agile juveniles
Orangutan is 4 times stronger than humans
Look at how their fingers and toes are adapted to swinging
Enjoying food

Orangutan chart size
Palm size compared to human's
Orangutans are arboreal animals which means they live on trees. Everyday, they build a fresh nest to rest on
Adorable orangutans
Baby orangutans are just like human babies!
Things that were stolen taken by the orang utans. As this is not a zoo, they are not caged and can reach out to you. Human things can be dangerous to them. Think 2-year-old kids who have no clue.
But do not fear as they won't happen that easily. I was not approached by any.  
They have their individuality too. Just like humans.

Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC)

Unbeknown by many, the smallest bear in the world is also under threat! Sun bears are often mistaken as dogs and because of its cuteness, this bear is often poached to be kept as pets and attractions in farms. All the bears in this conservation centre are ex-pets!

This bear is special to us because they are only found in the South East Asian regions and Sabah is home to many. Unlike other bears on Earth, they do not hibernate. 

While you are there, don't forget to lookout for Papa Bear! Dr. Wong Siew Te is the founder of the conservation and protects the bears with all his heart. He is a wildlife biologist and stumbled upon the need for sun bear conservation by chance. He instantly clicked with the bears and his passion for ensuring their survivall has grown ever since. 

At a mere cost of RM5.30, it is extremely worth it to take a look at the cute bears and Papa Bear's efforts as it is located just opposite the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre. All proceeds of fee and sales at the centre will aide the  conservation activities.

For more information, visit and
FB page

The Sun Bear Conservation centre is located just opposite the Orangutan rehabilitaion centre in Sepilok
Mary, the very endearing one
Minimal fee to enter
Dr. Wong Siew Te
They do look like dogs from afar
Don't even think of calling out to the bears there because that is only the right of Papa Bear!
Having a siesta

Sepilok Nature Resort

After the visit to the rehabilitation and conservation centres, reward yourself with delectable lunch with a verdant view to match.

Bask in the pleasure of being surrounded by plants and vegetation at the Sepilok Nature Resort. Whether for stay or for meals, its surroundings breathes a refreshing vibe into you. This resort not only adopts plants in its interior but also incorporates stylish interior settings using elements of wood and fabric. Taking a break from the unruly wild, the resort allows you to be intimate with nature at the comfort of modernity.

Rainforest Discovery Centre, Sepilok

While you are at Sepilok visiting the orangutans and sun bears, do take the opportunity too to delve into the richness of flora and fauna at the Sepilok Rainforest Discovery Centre. Just a 20-minute walk from the orangutan rehabilitation centre, you will find one of the top environmental educational centres in Sabah and the access to the 4300 ha (a gigantic block!) Sepilok-Kabili Forest Reserve managed by the Sabah Forestry Department.

It is home to a wealth of flora and fauna and mainly used for research and learning.  Be among the arboreal animals by gallivanting on the 375m elevated walkway or perch on the observation towers to watch the birds. Known to be a safer alternative than the wild, it is also a favourite among hikers for the fresh air is excellent.

Those who like a green backdrop in their Instagram or a hike also flock here as the environment is truely organic. A scenery from this place is also adopted on the cover of the Sabah Travel Catalogue 2019.

Rainforest Discovery Cenre
This scene is featured on the cover of Sabah Travel Catalogue 2019
Appreciate nature on the canopy walk
How many birds can you spot?
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