orangutans

Noor, Queen of the Jungle

For many months we had tried to track and observe Noor. This impressive female with a dark face and long hair had proven to be very difficult to locate; first, because her radio tracking device had become inactive; and second, because she had cleverly learned to evade us.

You could say that Noor’s personality is more like that of the Queen of Hearts than Alice – she often gets upset at observers and will chase them away to keep them out of her wonderland. Luckily for us, she showed up this month and honored us with her presence for a few days.

The Queen of Hearts hangs on the tree

When we spotted Noor from our boats along the river bank, she had already seen us first and was observing us intently. Keeping a close eye on us and watching every move we made, anybody would think Noor was the one observing and taking notes on us! She hid behind a log and took fleeting glances at her human visitors, just as they would have done to observe her.

Clearly we weren’t very exciting to watch and she soon got bored and started grooming herself. This is when we started to learn the secrets behind Noor’s beauty: looking fit and healthy, she took her time to very carefully prime every single strand of her lustrous hair. After completing her hair regime, the majestic red queen suddenly became a goofy Alice. Oblivious to her size, Noor moved off through the forest choosing branches too small to hold her weight, which cracked and broke in her wake. She picked up speed in an effort to stop herself from falling, but after three broken branches was unable to avoid the inevitable and swiftly fell on her bottom.

Like a queen keeping up appearances before her loyal subjects, Noor glared back at us, as if waiting for us to show her the respect she demanded. With her pride barely intact, Queen Noor turned her back on her human observers and moved off to forage for forest fruits.

Until we meet again, your highness!

Text by: Alizee Martin, PRM Coordinator Batikap

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