Palm Oil Worker Badly Hurt in Borneo Orangutan Attack
An Indonesian palm oil plantation worker was found badly injured Tuesday after an orangutan attack on Borneo island, an official said, following a series of shootings of the endangered apes.
The man, named Kurnadi, was found unconscious and covered in bite wounds by another worker at the plantation in the Indonesian part of Borneo island, according to the local government conservation agency.
Agency chief Hartono, who like many Indonesians goes by one name, said it was unclear how many orangutans were involved in the attack.
“He was badly injured, some of his fingers were nearly cut off. He had fainted after losing a lot of blood,” he told AFP.
Medics said the 45-year-old had discharged himself from hospital in the town of Sampit.
It was unclear whether Kurnadi had been trying to clear apes from the plantation in Central Kalimantan province. In the past year orangutans have been shot several times as a form of pest control at plantations.
An orangutan was rescued from a Central Kalimantan plantation this month after being shot 104 times with an airgun. The female ape was blinded in one eye but survived and is now at a rehabilitation center.
Indonesia is the world’s biggest palm oil producer. Environmentalists say the orangutans’ natural habitat is being destroyed as forests are cleared to make way for plantations.