The Primates at Dao Tien

The Primates at Dao Tien

Since 2008 EAST has carried out managed releases of 73 primates back into the wild.

Many other rescued primates are being cared for at Dao Tien. Those suitable will be returned to the wild when ready.

The primates currently being cared for at Dao Tien are:

LimHuyen and his family (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2008
SEX: Male

Limhuyen and his partner Misu were rescued from a concrete cage with a chain around their necks, from a Vietnamese tourist attraction in 2009, along with one other young gibbon, Trang. Limhuyen and Misu have lived in a semi-free enclosure on Dao Tien since juvenile,and both are now amazing in the trees and they have developed a strong pair-bond, with two offspring Savvy and Thai. Limhuyen and his family are ready to release and we hope in 2018/ 2019 they will be released. Limhuyen is a handsome gentle dad, with a very steady character, always keeping his distance from humans – just like a wild gibbon.

Uh (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)  

AGE: Estimated born 2004
SEX: Female

Uh was kept as a pet in Bien Hoa city with a male (Teo) before their rescue in 2010. Uh, with jutting out canines due to mild rickets when kept as a pet, is strong in character.  As she was mature when rescued, she has a long way to go to be confident in trees but is putting everything she has into regaining that wild life.

She now is paired with Tony. Tony is silly at times and teases her but very early morning before most people are awake they play wildly.

Tony (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2007
SEX: Male

Hunted from the wild, then kept illegally as a solitary pet in Bien Hoa city, he was rescued by the Forest Protection Department in 2011. He was very small and malnourished, lacking muscle development. Because he had never seen another gibbon since being hunted, he didn’t know how to be around others – he was either terrified or overly boisterous, not knowing the difference between play and aggression. Tony is now living with Uh and has greatly improved, and early morning, when no one is around, they can be seen playing wildly. This is so very special for this gibbon and has taken so many years for him to enjoy physical contact.

Kalle (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2009
SEX: Female

Kalle was confiscated by the Forestry Protection Department after being kept illegally. She arrived at Dao Tien in February 2013. She is an assertive young gibbon who doesn’t like humans, but sadly she has had health issues, the first a nasty break in her knee which needed pinning. Kalle recovered well from this and rehabilitated in the trees to ensure she used her leg. Sadly in 2017 after becoming quiet in the trees she was diagnosed with liver failure. On milk thistle her condition has much improved, but at this stage it is unlikely we can release her. For now she lives with Tinh Tin, a very confused little gibbon, only rescued in 2017. Kalle is proving to be a gentle big sister tolerant of Tinh Tin’s nervous behaviour.

Khoi (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2007
SEX: Male

Kept as an illegal solitary pet in Ho Chi Minh City until rescued by the Forest Protection Department.  He was sent to the Wildlife at Risk Rescue Station in Cu Chi and brought to Dao Tien in 2009 for rehabilitation.

Having been kept on his own for two years, he didn’t know how to react when put in an enclosure with other gibbons. He had no idea how to communicate like a gibbon. A shy individual, it took months of slow introductions for him to gain enough confidence to interact with other gibbons (all he wanted was human attention).

Now as a young male he has proved to be amazing in the trees, but sadly has not been able to lose his attraction to humans and will follow humans if given the opportunity.   At this point Khoi is not on the release program. Instead he has the choice of many females at the centre to socialise with.  At the moment he lives with Nhee.  It is too early to say whether this will be a strong relationship.

Dien (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)  

AGE: Estimated born 2012
SEX: Male

This young male arrived in April 2013, less than a year old and peppered with gun-shot pellets. He was found curled up on the floor of a small rat cage, severely malnourished. He made a fabulous recovery, spurred on by the great relationship he had with Kalle, and became a very confident, tough young gibbon. Sadly though he is attracted to human females and will come down on the ground to meet them. This trait is too dangerous to return to the forest at this time. Dien now lives with Hoa, who he is developing a strong pair bond with. We hope with a strong pair bond he may forget about humans.

Hoa (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2005
SEX: Female

Rescued in December 2009, with a young female (Bien) after being kept as pets by a family in Bien Hoa City. Both gibbons could see each other, but never have any physical contact. Being alone affected both psychologically. After both passing health checks, Hoa and Bien were finally introduced to each other in the same cage – something little Bien craved. Bien was desperate to hug and play with Hoa, running up to her straight away and wrapping her legs around her. Now both gibbons have grown up, Hoa is living with adult male Dien. Hoa has proved to be a fussy female and will not live with just any male, but handsome Dien is winning Hoa over slowly. At this point we are not sure if Hoa will make full fitness for release, but we hope so.

Dao (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2005
SEX: Female

Her parents were hunted from the wild over 20 years ago and kept illegally at a school in Bien Hoa. Dao was born at the school yard. All three were rescued by the FPD in 2008 and now live at Dao Tien.

Dao was taken from her mother when less than a year old and kept in a cage on her own; a traumatic experience for both. As a result of her loneliness, Dao would wrap her legs around her body, to mimic being hugged by another gibbon.

After she was rescued, she was put back with her parents but her mother did not recognise her and would not allow her to be part of their family again. Instead we placed Dao with a surrogate mum who cared for her for many years. Now Dao is caring for youngsters herself, acting as big sister and living in a semi-free enclosure and is on track for release soon – so she can build her own family in the wild.

Kizzy (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2011
SEX: Female

This feisty young lady was just a few months old when she arrived at Dao Tien in November 2012. She had a severe compound fracture on her right arm, probably caused by falling from the canopy when she was captured. She made a full recovery and is now in a semi-forested area completing her final stages of tree-training with her best friend Dong (a young male) and adult female Dao, who has proved to be an excellent ‘big sister’ to Kizzy. We hope in 2018/2019 Kizzy with Dong will be released back to the wild.

Trang Bom (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2004
SEX: Female

Rescued from the town of Trang Bom (hence her name) in 2008 as a juvenile, after being kept illegally. Once Trang Bom had passed her health checks, she was introduced to Lee Lee, an 18-year-old male. They had both been kept in isolation for most of their lives and knew little about natural gibbon behaviour. With slow introductions through the mesh of their enclosure, they groomed nervously but , when given full access to each other, nerves would take over and their behaviour became chaotic and sometimes dangerous. It was then decided that Trang Bom might be better in an enclosure with some younger gibbons, where she could act as a big sister and gain confidence while developing good gibbon behaviours. Since then Trang Bom has had several male pair mates but always has maintained a strong affinity for infants. Trang Bon now has another surrogate mum role with Loc. Trang bom during the first introduction was so gentle with Loc, gently presenting her chest for a cuddle. Loc was thrilled to have a new mum.

Tau (White-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2004
SEX: Male

Rescued from a tourist attraction in Vung Tau in July 2008, he had been kept alone in a tiny cage with no access to water, next to a cage with another male, SaMee, who was also rescued. Tau is a white-cheeked gibbon (Nomascus siki), a species classified as critically endangered. This means he was hunted from the forests of Central Vietnam. When rescued he was very malnourished and had a vitamin deficiency because of his poor diet. This resulted in his fur being thin and stubbly. When he arrived at Dao Tien, he seemed determined to make the most of his opportunity to get better. He would regularly be seen swinging around his enclosure, making the most of every available piece of his new space. He fought back from this weak state to become a beautiful, fit and healthy young gibbon. Tau now lives in a forested enclosure with Bien and is on track for release.

Ellie (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2005
SEX: Female

Ellie was confiscated by the FPD in 2009. She was considered dangerous so had been chained to her small travel box door.  She was severely dehydrated and malnourished when she was found and could hardly move.

Ellie was desperate for company and tried to groom everyone in reach. When first put in with another gibbon (a female called Dao), she was so excited she pinned her down with her feet and groomed her frantically. Ellie has now become a strong, playful adult, although a little small due to her poor start in life. During 2010 Ellie had her first experience in the trees and was amazing. Sadly, she has developed a severe curved spine, so will not be able to go free at this time. Now living with Teo, we closely monitor her health.

Teo (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2005
SEX: Male

Hunted as a baby and sold as a pet in Bien Hoa City, along with an unrelated female gibbon (Uh). Both were rescued by the Forest Protection Department in 2010 and now live at Dao Tien.
Teo has a severely twisted rib cage, most likely caused from lack of sunlight, when confined to a small cage in the dark.

When Teo was given more space at Dao Tien he was unable to swing; his arms and back were so weak that he would lie like a dog. Over time the additional space improved his agility and muscle tone and he now moves around his enclosure like a proper gibbon.  Teo has one of the most beautiful singing voices of all the males on Dao Tien. His companion is Ellie.

Ha (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 1985

Rescued in 2007, along with his pair mate Noi and their daughter Dao, from a school yard in Bien Hoa City. It is thought their ‘owners’ kept them there for over 20 years and were breeding the pair and selling the babies into the illegal pet trade. During their time at the school, we believe Noi gave birth to a number of infants who were sold. One baby, Dao, was rescued at the same time. However, the ‘owners’ had separated Dao from her mother when she was less than a year and kept her in a separate cage. This would have been a hugely distressing for both mother, father and daughter. Having been together all their lives, Ha and Noi were a solid pair. Sadly in 2014 Noi (an old lady) passed away with kidney failure. Ha is now close to Hiep for company, and as both males carries the cold sore virus they cannot be released back to the wild. Ha loves his food and is always having to watch his weight!

Cu Chi (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2005
SEX: Female

Rescued by the Wildlife at Risk rescue station in Cu Chi and transferred to Dao Tien in October 2008 for rehabilitation. Nothing is known of her history prior to rescue. Cu Chi was introduced to Nha and they were instantly the best of friends and remain together today. Cu Chi is a strong female who does not tolerate much silliness from her male. Both Nha and Cuchi are fearless of humans to the extent they will attack. Sadly because of this reason they are too dangerous to return back to the wild.

Nha (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2002
SEX: Male

Rescued from a restaurant in 2008, where he was kept as a tourist attraction amongst rubble and rubbish. Living with Cu Chi, he is a very curious gibbon, always aware of all that is going on, even other wildlife, and has been found to mimic bird calls and answer their song. Sadly Nha is fearless of humans to the extent when in the trees he comes down to the ground to attach them. Because of this at this time it is not safe for us to release Nha.

Dong (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Born January 2011
SEX: Male

In January 2011 Dong was born on Dao Tien to a pair of gibbons on track for release. Sadly his parents became too dangerous to release, fearless of humans and attacking them. Luckily Dong with a more normal life growing up in the trees in a forested enclosure on Dao Tien keeps away from humans like a normal wild gibbon. Dong is a confident large young male, living with best friend Kizzy and big sister Dao. Dong with Kizzy will be ready for release in 2018/ 2019.

Luat (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born January 2006)
SEX: Male

Captured from the wild as a young baby and given to a senior military official in Binh Phuc province as a gift. When he first came to Dao Tien in 2009 Luat had to be given milk twice a day to help develop muscle and put on weight. Luat is now fully grown and sings a beautiful male song, as a lone male would in the wild. Sadly Luat has human cold sore virus so cannot return to the wild. Socially Luat has been a very nervous male, always swinging fast to the extent you never saw him still. In 2018 he was introduced to a female with the same disease profile, Be. Both individuals were social misfits but after a very scary introduction where they charged at each other it became clear they wanted contact but just had no idea how to do it. Slowly thanks to Luat tolerating the charges of Be with no reaction, he become still. So still that Be can now be seen grooming him. It has taken so many years to get Luat mentally at a point where he trusted another gibbon and importantly wants the social companionship of another gibbon. At last Luat has a companion to share his life with, as a gibbon should.

Trang (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2008
SEX: Female

Rescued from a big Vietnamese tourist attraction in March 2009, along with two other young gibbons, Misu and LimHuyen. In 2010 Trang moved to a Phase 2 forested nursery enclosure, along with some other young gibbons, so they could practice their tree skills.

Trang is a beautiful gibbon, with lots of attitude and a feisty spirit. She does not make friends easily but, once she has established a friendship, she is loyal and will help her friend whenever they need it. Trang is a beautiful young female is ready for release.

Bien (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2007
SEX: Female

Rescued in December 2009 with an older female (Hoa) after being kept as pets by a family in Bien Hoa City. Both gibbons could see each other but had no physical contact. Being alone affected both psychologically. Bien was desperate to be hugged by another gibbon. Bien and Hoa were introduced. Immediately Bien ran up to Hoa and wrapped her legs around her. At this young age, Bien would have still been clinging onto her mum in the wild and this instinctive need for contact was incredibly strong. However Hoa could not reciprocate. Having been on her own for most of her life, she did not know how to react. Despite this, Bien was protective of her new best friend and, despite being half of Hoa’s age, would jump in front of her protectively when staff came near. Bien now happily lives in the trees with Tau. Day by day she is getting better and better in the trees and will soon be ready for release.

Nhee (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2007
SEX: Female

Rescued by Forest Protection Department and Wildlife at Risk in 2008 and brought to Dao Tien in June 2008, Nhee is a loving kind gibbon, gentle with other gibbons she has met. She is living with Khoi. Nhee has spent all her life up to this point in the cage and we are not yet sure if she can make the transition to trees. She seeks attention from humans.

Tinh Tin (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2013
SEX: Male

Tinh Tin was rescued from a mansion in Ho Chi Minh City in 2017, kept since an infant gibbon as a pet. A very brave little girl put her hand up in an education outreach class and said “I know of a pet gibbon”. When we rescued him, he was living in a small cage in a back corridor with no direct natural light. Inside the cage was nothing for him, all he could do was sit and peer out. He was very malnourished, He unnaturally wanted to sit on the floor as that was all he knew, but slowly we have got him off the ground higher and higher. Equally with daily exercise he has become stronger and stronger and now enjoys brachiation. Tinh Tin has passed all his health checks and has been slowly introduced to Kalle. Tinh Tin needs to take things a little slow as he has had so little social play in his life- it’s all very new. But he is doing so well and does reach out to play Kalle.

Hiep (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2010
SEX: Male

Hiep was rescued from Madagoi a town in the buffer zone of Cat Tien in July 2017. Hiep was a very malnourished, nervous male and sadly failed health checks. For now we have given him a larger cage and hoping he gains strength and calms down. We did try to introduce him to a female but he is not yet ready, far too frightened.

Be (Golden-Cheeked Gibbon)

AGE: Estimated born 2010
SEX: Female

Be was transferred from Cat Tien rescue centre in June 2017. Sadly Be has the human cold sore disease cannot be released. Be has lived most of her young life on her own, thus developing many unusual behaviour traits; folding her legs up like budda, a very playful female. When introduced to Luat she did not know what to do and would charge at him although it was soon clear she wanted positive contact but did not know how. Slowly over time both Be and Luat are learning how to be gibbon and play and groom each other

Duane

AGE: Estimated born 2015
SEX: Male

Duane is a young male gibbon confiscated from the illegal pet trade in Central Vietnam. While kept as a pet he was swaddled like a baby for long periods which seriously influenced his movement and also his development. At the cage of 16 months would still not reach out to take food, he had to be hand fed. Now Duane is doing much better, one of the reasons for this is his strong playful busy spirit. After being the perfect big brother for Loc, Duane was introduced to Pille and Palle, to slightly older gibbons who Duane can look up to and be educated on the ways of gibbon. Although Duane has had a terrible start as yet he does not display any of the traits that will fail him for release, so we hope he can make it when adult. Next stage trees!

Loc

AGE: Estimated born 2016
SEX: Female

Loc an infant female gibbon was rescued by a Vietnamese construction worker in the Central Highlands of Vietnam. It is most likely her mother was killed by road construction teams living at the edge of the forest. Loc is a very feisty young female who loves to sing, even at an estimated 8 weeks would sing with attitude as the other gibbons at the centre called. Initially at 3 months of age Loc was introduced to Duane, a very gentle young gibbon who gave Loc just what she needed, security, comfort and play from a gibbon. Loc sadly took advantage of Duane and kept riding on his back until he was exhausted. At 14 months of age we decided to try and find a surrogate mum for Loc, now weaned she could live full time with a gibbon mum. We introduced Loc to a gentle female called Trangbom, after 2 minutes of nerves Loc was getting a cuddle from her new mum. Loc will now spend the next years until adolescence growing up with Trangbom. As she becomes stronger we hope to introduce her to Duane and when ready to an adult female gibbon in the role of a surrogate big sister/mother. At this point she will be fast tracked to the trees to ensure she does not become too habituated for humans.

Hoi

AGE: Estimated born 2014
SEX: Male

Hoi was transferred to Dao Tien with Vang from Bu Gia Map National Park in February 2016. Hoi a young male was 14 months old, he had been kept in isolation in a space less than one metres square, underweight with deficiencies. Hoi was desperate for a friend to play with, and quickly achieved his goal and became best buddies with Vang. The key now that they have each other is to slowly move them away from our primate care staff and with each other they can start to learn how to play in the trees. Both now living full time in a forested enclosure, they enjoy a happy life as we allow them to grow and become ready for release. Access to trees is vital in the rehabilitation of infant gibbons, to gain confidence and to distance themselves from their care givers, before the damage of imprinting to humans occurs.

Vang

AGE: Estimated born 2015
SEX: Female

Vang was transferred along with Hoi from Bu Gia Map National Park in February 2016. Vang a little female seven months old was on milk drinks, but lacking her mother’s constant contact sucked her arm for comfort. Both were underweight with deficiencies. Vang has grown in confidence and now is able to play manically with Hoi, as any little gibbon should. The key now that they have each other is to slowly move them away from our primate care staff and with each other they can start to learn how to play in the trees. When given access to the trees, as expected Hoi charged out with his playful curious confidence, leaving Vang swinging in her hammock wondering why the world was changing shape. Hoi would come charging back in to try and persuade her to follow. It took time but finally she did. Vang is gaining confidence in the trees daily.

Pille

AGE: Estimated born 2014
SEX: Female

Pille was transferred from Cuc Phoung Endangered Primate Rescue Centre near Hanoi with Palle in July 2017. Both females are very playful, but Pille is more confident/dominant and curious individual. This curious busy nature has proved to be what was needed for nurturing Duane into their small group. Pille is on track for the next stage, trees!

Palle

AGE: Estimated born 2014
SEX: Female

Palle was transferred from Cuc Phoung Endangered Primate Rescue Centre near Hanoi with Pille in July 2017. Both females are very playful, but Palle is much quieter in nature and more sensitive to social pressure. Palle is on track for the next stage, trees!

Amelie

AGE: Estimated born 2015
SEX: Female

Amelie arrived Dao Tien in February 2018 after living in Dalat as a pet since an infant. She is a very beautiful juvenile with a happy playful spirit. Once Amelie has completed health checks and importantly disease screening we will find her someone to play with. Its time she had some fun in her life.