Back to Gunung Palung

Dear Friends,

In October I was able to get back out to Gunung Palung in Borneo and check in on the baby orangutan born to Walimah in May.  You may recall from an earlier newsletter that in July, the two-month old baby was still clinging to her mom 100% of the time.  What a big change I saw in October!  Now she is climbing around on branches and vines near her mom, and trying to sample fruits, imitating her mom’s feeding behavior, even though she can’t open the fruits yet.  Here are a few images that show the five-month old baby, named Winnie by Pak Ari, the Director of Gunung Palung National Park that I shot in October.

Featured Photos:

Walimah cradles her baby Winnie, now five months old – but you can see how small she is – lots of growing and growing up ahead!

Baby Winnie, five months old, reaching for fruits she’s not big enough to eat.

Baby Winnie climbing around on her own – but she’s never out of mom’s reach!

Filming for the BBC – Seven Worlds One Planet:

On the Orangutan theme, I’m excited to share that a major filming project that I worked on at Gunung Palung in 2017 and 2018 has now come to fruition!  BBC newest Landmark series Seven Worlds One Planet’s Episode 2, Asia, includes a segment on the orangutans of Gungung Palung.  The “Making of” section at the end of the film also features our work at Gunung Palung and the issue of orangutan conservation.  

The film is already on the air in the UK, and will premier in the US on January 18, 2020.

To share just a little of what it is like do high quality filming of orangutans in Gunung Palung, it requires long days of carrying heavy gear through the forest for those occasional chances when we can get a good view of the orangutans. I carry my RED Helium 8K camera with a Canon 200-400mm and am closely followed by my assistant Bacong carrying a Gitzo series 5 tripod with a Sachtler video head. When we get a view, Bacong quickly puts up the tripod, I pop on the camera and try to get a shot off.  We do this many, many times for each time we actually film something usable. But it’s worth the effort!

Tim and Bacong crossing a stream while filming orangutans in Gunung Palung. 
Photo by Russell Laman.

As always, you can learn more about my wife Cheryl Knott’s research and conservation work at Gunung Palung by checking out her website and following her teams’ work at @saveGPorangutans.  Please consider supporting their hard work partnering with the National Park and surrounding communities to safeguard GP as an orangutan sanctuary for the long term.

Gallery Update

Holiday sale coming up:  It’s that time of year, and I’m going to be offering a special holiday discount in my Fine Art Store for the last week of November.  It will be a perfect time for some early holiday shopping with plenty of time for printing and shipping, so think about anyone who might appreciate a Tim Laman print, ranging in price from $100 and up and keep your eye out for the sale announcement.  Thanks for supporting my work!

Thanks for reading, and best wishes to all.