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Aug 19, 2019

19November and 9July roaming our Center's Forest

19November and 9July
19November and 9July

PROGRESS Report

Indeed, we looked back at our reports from the past years and from this same period, and we do see progress. Two years ago around this time, we had just moved from my house in the city to the forest center. First without energy, but then our solar system came on, and Ostrich and Jinkoe then could be housed in their incubator at night at the center. One year later they were roaming the trees and our center now is home to many of our wards, although you need binoculars to spot them. We do not like to keep them in enclosures for too long.

19November

And so we reported last year about our friend 19 November and her baby. And this year again, we can proudly say, she is doing really well. We suspect that on the 9thof July she had her second baby in her new home. And it is such a pleasure to see the two of them roaming the trees around the center. In my opinion she deliberately comes to trees close to our building to show off her baby 9July as we named her. Yvonne, our animal caretaker, and her twin sister, and one other volunteer Annelies, all celebrate their birthday on the 9thof July, so as we assumed the baby was born on this day, we decided to name it 9July. As can be seen from the pictures with this report, the baby is growing well and climbing from the front to the back of her mom, hanging on for dear life.

Rescues and Releases

As if word got out that we are back on the road with our rescue vehicle, animals again are lining up to be rescued. One special story was from an animal that was crossing the road not far from our center, was picked up by a family, who started to quarrel about who should have it. Then the woman who had first seen it, said to the other family members,
"I saw it first, I am going to bring it to town to sell."
So, she saved the sloth from a more obscure fate and brought it to the Zoo. The animal was then reported to us. I called this lady, and asked her about the details of the animal, was it crossing the road from the river to the forest, or from the forest to the riverside. She told me from the forest to the river. So I called my friends from Apartments Bloemendaal that I had a special sloth, that had been crossing the road towards the river, so I wanted to bring him to the location where he had wanted to go to. Our Bloemendaal friends, were pleased to bring him across in their boatSo this sloth, made a big detour to cross the road all the way to the city and back, to be brought to the river where he had been going to in the first place.  And we released him right there!

So there are always stories of hope. And we keep spreading this hope thanks to your kind support.

After so much exercise, 9July yawning from effort
After so much exercise, 9July yawning from effort
19November and 9July looking into the camera
19November and 9July looking into the camera
9July sitting upside down?
9July sitting upside down?
Off he goes, finally across the river!
Off he goes, finally across the river!
Aug 5, 2019

Frankie, an Anteater with Spirit

Frankie on her daily walk in the garden
Frankie on her daily walk in the garden

In our last report, we gave a broad overview of the happenings of the dry months that started out our year, and the many, many rescues we did. After that incredibly busy time, we had a short period of no rescues, just caring for the animals that are at the center. And then we started again on our usual schedule of an animal or two a week. Mostly sloths, and for the past two weeks, from one specific location around Lelydorp. Last Wednesday, we had a total of five animals, so the bus was stacked full with passengers looking for a better life in the forest. One of the animals was Frankie, an anteater that had stayed with us for almost 2 weeks.

Frankie was found by a good soul on a road around 80 km outside of Paramaribo, in the District of Brokopondo. And she had apparently been hit by a car, but was not dead. She arrived at our offices the next day, and appeared to be in a state of shock and weakness. When we took her to the vet, she had regained already some of her strength, and was mainly defensive. That was not making it easier for us to examine her. So the vet was going to come by the next day, when she was a little bit more settled in and no longer so scared of us. Frankie slept a lot, which is good when you have a bad headache, and when the vet visited, she was not as restless. However, we did find that she had a parasite in her foot and in her digestive system.

To treat her, we would have to give her either medicines by injection or through her food. Neither one was easy. After four days, she started to eat the food, instead of just stepping on it and in it. And then something pretty amazing happened. As I was preparing her food, I heard a snort. I was not sure whether Frankie was doing that, but for sure, when she saw me with the food, she did it again. Frankie was talking to me! She actually had gotten the taste of the food, and now was instructing me to make a bit more haste. It never ceases to amaze me how these completely wild animals connect with us, interact with us, and cease any defensive behavior. Once they understand that you are helping them, they start to direct us and indicate what they need.

Frankie stayed with us for a bit longer than normal, because we felt that we had to give her a good start. She really enjoyed all the food we gave her, from frozen termites nests to yoghurt with supplements. And when we let her go, she left at ease, she immediately started to check out her surroundings.

On the 9thof July we started to paint an educational mural with a student group from Tulane University. The design was made by a well-known Surinamese artist and the animals we worked with were displayed in their actual sizes next to each other, so we can provide people a sense of the difference in sizes of the sloths, anteaters and armadillos we work with. We did see Ostrich around in the trees surrounding the center, but we did not see 19November. We continued the work on the mural over several weekends with other volunteers and we hope to finish it by the end of August.

Then my sloth friend 19November surprised us a few days later, when she showed up again, showing off her new baby. We decided to call it 9July, because we all had the feeling it was 19November showing us that she also could create something.

With your support, we continue to care for sloth and anteaters in trouble. We make daily efforts to improve the circumstances under which we rescue, rehabilitate and release the animals, ensuring their individual well-being one at a time.

Impression of the focused work done by students
Impression of the focused work done by students
9July climbing on her mother's head
9July climbing on her mother's head
Tulane students posing in front of their work
Tulane students posing in front of their work
Our mural, a work in progress
Our mural, a work in progress
May 20, 2019

Thanking you with Sloth Hugs and Anteater Licks!

The Cock Sigfried saved a sloth
The Cock Sigfried saved a sloth

As we reported to you in our last report, now that we have almost fully funded this project, we started to reorganize our projects. We added some of its components to our other project “Sloth Sanctuary Suriname sequel: the whole story!” that we had created to build the sloth center. So we can continue to do what we have been doing now for almost 15 years, helping sloths return to where they belong: in the forest. On the 22ndof May, the International Day for Biodiversity, GlobalGiving is running a campaign for Paws and Claws, that will reward new recurring donations to our project “Sloth Sanctuary Suriname sequel: the whole story!” with a partial match. So, if you want to continue supporting this particular part of our work and had been supporting “Sanctuary helps Suriname's sloths back to jungle", the 22ndof May is the day to change your recurring donation to our project “Sloth Sanctuary Suriname sequel: the whole story!”.

Rescues and Releases

In the past months, we had an extraordinary drought starting in January that lasted all the way up to Easter. With a clear effect on the sloths in and around Paramaribo, as we did 63 rescues over a period of 3 months, while we normally rescue around 150 animals per year. This drought was so prolonged that leaves were falling from the trees. This meant that the leaves were not as juicy as normal, and sadly my little friend Jinkoe fell victim to the long drought. 

A frustrating rescue period

We received during this drought six very small babies, who had been abandoned by their mothers. None of these animals was over 300 g, the smallest being 220 g and the biggest 274 g. A tiny little baby, Beanie, in addition to being so frail, also did not have a tail. We always thought Jinkoe was the smallest baby we had ever seen, but these babies were unusually small. Unfortunately, we were not able to keep them alive. Two adult animals were reported and rescued by us, that had been attacked by dogs. Again, one was so badly injured, the veterinary doctors advised us to do the humane thing. The other animal although apparently not with visible injuries, in the end also passed away. This period was very frustrating for us, as we felt incredibly inept at keeping these tiny tots alive.

Some special rescues giving us hope

We provided to many of the adult animals we received special care, because a lot of them were dehydrated and some needed subcutaneous fluids, others were capable of drinking themselves and gladly took the water offered to them orally. One animal that probably had seen enough water in this dry period, was Henderic, who was sitting in water in a tire along a dock. He was successfully released in a forest along a river far away from the unfriendly dogs he had encountered. And a special mention goes to an animal by the name of Sigfried, not a sloth, but a cock. And no, we have not started saving cocks, but this cock saved a sloth. And for that, he was rewarded by us naming the sloth after him. These are stories of hope. Hope we will continue to give to animals in need with your kind support. 

As this is most likely the last report we will write for this project, we want to thank you all for making this such a successful project. And we hope to see your continued support for the sloths on our project “Sloth Sanctuary Suriname sequel: the whole story!”. Sloth hugs and Anteaters licks!

Jinkoe when she had just arrived in 2017
Jinkoe when she had just arrived in 2017
Dry leaves fell from the trees during the drought
Dry leaves fell from the trees during the drought
Gabriel one of the underweight babies upon arrival
Gabriel one of the underweight babies upon arrival

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