There are many jobs to be done at the Cikananga Wildlife Rescue Center, and all of them are rewarding. But for me, nothing was as rewarding as working with the slow lorises. It was love at first sight when I first saw one ten years ago, and my experience working with them was a dream come true.
I was lucky enough to feed them and clean their cages almost every day. I also helped them get weighed, helped Little Fireface Project’s postdoctoral researcher Grace Fuller film them eating insects as part of her venom study, helped build furniture for two outdoor habitats, had a delightful late night (or rather, midday) rendezvous with them and even saw three wild lorises!
Although the reason the slow lorises arrived at the Centre is sad and devastating, it was wonderful to meet and get to know so many lorises as individuals. And Cikananga is taking excellent care of them. My favorite was one who had a blind eye. I was calling him Captain Kukang, or the Captain, as he needed a tough name to make up for his eye, and, well, he looked like a pirate. He’s such a delightful little guy, curious but cautious, and so sweet.
Although I already knew these animals were beautiful, it was such an excellent experience to be able to work with them on a daily basis. I am already looking forward to helping with their release and setting all my new little loves free.
Special thanks to Bradley The Tanner’s who have supplied LFP with gloves for handling these venomous yet adorable animals!