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Renowned Scientist and Conservationist Biruté Mary Galdikas to Join Silversea Expedition Cruise in October

April 26, 2016 Cruise No Comments Print Print Email Email

Silversea Expeditions is pleased to announce that the internationally recognised scientist, conservationist and educator Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas will join Silver Discoverers 18 October 2016 expedition cruise as a guest lecturer.  Famous for her studies and work with the orangutans of Indonesian Borneo in their natural habitat, she is considered the world’s foremost authority on the orangutan.


This unique 11-day voyage (#9623), sailing from Balikpapan to Singapore, will explore the exotic islands of Indonesia, spending more than two full days in the port of Kumai, gateway to Tanjung Puting National Park and its legendary Camp Leakey.  Operated by Dr. Galdikas’ non-profit Orangutan Foundation International (OFI), Camp Leakey is the site of the primatologist’s pioneering research in the wild.

During an enriching onboard presentation, Dr. Galdikas will share insights from her 45 years devoted to the study, care and preservation of endangered orangutans. Additionally, she will lead a private tour to Camp Leakey, where guests can experience close-up encounters with these amazing animals.  Along the way, guests will be immersed in magnificent tropical scenery where they may spot proboscis monkeys, gibbons, and macaques, as well as birds from more than 200 species.

In the company of Dr. Galdikas, Silversea guests will also be granted rare access to the OFI’s Orangutan Care Centre and Quarantine facility located in the village of Pasir Panjang.  The rehabilitation centre is home to numerous orphaned, sick or injured orangutans.  Normally closed to the public, it has occasionally opened its doors to a select group of visitors, including former U.S. President Bill Clinton.

“We’re extremely honoured to have Dr. Galdikas join this special cruise to talk about her work in Borneo and personally guide our guests on their visit to her world-famous Camp Leakey and Orangutan Care Centre,” said Karen Christensen, Silversea’s General Manager & Director Sales / Marketing, Australasia.  “This is an exceptional opportunity for nature lovers and conservation-minded travellers to discover the remarkable islands of Indonesia and help support efforts to protect the region’s endangered wildlife.”

Throughout her life, Dr. Galdikas has fought tirelessly for orangutan conservation. After meeting with Kenyan anthropologist Dr. Louis Leakey in 1969, she expressed her desire to study the orangutan in the wild.  It took three years for Dr. Leakey to secure the funding and support for Dr. Galdikas to begin her research.  To honour her mentor, she named her first camp after him.  Among her many awards, Dr. Galdikas is the only non-Indonesian born person to have been given the prestigious Kalpataru award, the highest honour given by Indonesia for outstanding environmental leadership.

For each guest on this unique voyage of Silver Discoverer, Silversea Expeditions will donate $100 to the non-profit Orangutan Foundation International, a 501(c) (3) charity (Orangutan.org).

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