JURONG BIRD PARK AND NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL BRING RENOWNED NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PHOTOGRAPHER MATTIAS KLUM TO SINGAPORE

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SINGAPORE, 23 AUGUST 2011Jurong Bird Park, the world’s largest bird park, in collaboration with National Geographic Channel, presents its colourful and fascinating avian residents as subjects in an exclusive photography workshop in the park on 17 September 2011. The hands-on workshop will be conducted by renowned Nat Geo photographer, Mattias Klum, where he will share his experiences and photography techniques.

There are two workshops which are open to the public on 17 September. There will be one session in the morning and another in the afternoon, during which participants will embark on a personalized photo trail helmed by Mattias. Each 2 hour trail will take participants to some of Jurong Bird Park’s free-flight aviaries, and they can look forward to coming up close to the parks’ many vibrantly feathered residents. Mattias will provide feedback on the spot to participants for a much more engaging workshop, and will focus on areas like composition, action, techniques, pan-shots, slow shutter speeds and manual versus auto.

To take part and learn from the expert photographer Mattias Klum, the public can log on to www.natgeotv.com/birdpark from now till 7 September to share why they love photography in 100 words.

Mattias Klum

KING PENGUINS TO JOURNEY NORTH TO GUANGZHOU

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FOUR CAPTIVE-BRED BIRDS TO MOVE TO CHINA AS PART OF CONSERVATION PROGRAMME WITH PANYU XIANGJIANG SAFARI PARK

Singapore, 05 August 2011 – Four king penguins from Jurong Bird Park, the world’s largest avian park, will soon be flown to China as part of an exchange programme between Jurong Bird Park, an award winning park under Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) and Panyu Xiangjiang Safari Park in Guangzhou, China.

The exchange is part of a Memorandum of Understanding signed between both parties to improve conservation efforts through the sharing of resources and knowledge. “We are the only institution in South East Asia to successfully breed king penguins in captivity, and we are happy to share our breeding expertise with Panyu Xiangjiang Safari Park,” said Mr Raja Segran, General Manager, Jurong Bird Park. “The successful breeding of animals in captivity will ensure the survival of endangered species in the wild and also serves the purpose of educating visitors about the wildlife we have on our planet.”

The king penguins, two male and two females aged about four years old each, were first identified based on suitable age and sexual maturity. Subsequently, the captive-bred penguins were isolated prior to export to allow daily observations of their health status prior to departure.

They will undergo a routine veterinary check today, which is an important step in getting them ready for their trip on 16 August. Vets will conduct physical examinations and blood tests to ensure the birds have a clean bill of health.

Easily identified by their striking ear patches of golden-orange feathers, king penguins are the second largest species of penguin after the Emperor penguins, and one of the six species that can be found at the Jurong Bird Park’s Penguin Coast. This latest attraction features a total of 96 penguins of six different species, including the Humboldt, Rockhopper, Macaroni, Fairy and the African penguin, a recent addition that is adaptable to tropical climate. This exhibit features two 15-minute feeding sessions daily at 10.30am and 3.30pm where visitors can learn more about the different breeds and their feeding habits.

Frost, a 4 year old king penguin at Jurong Bird Park being restrained by his keeper, Angelin.

Dr Melodiya Magno conducting a physical check up on Frost.

Dr Melodiya about to collect a blood sample from Frost to run blood tests to check his health status.

Taking a blood sample from Frost’s neck for laboratory testing.

PERU’S NATIONAL BIRD LANDS IN SINGAPORE

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RIVER SAFARI WILL BE HOME TO THE ANDEAN COCK-OF-THE-ROCK

Singapore, 3 August 2011Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) received eight stunning birds from Peru as part of a continuing partnership with the Republic of Peru through the Embassy of Peru in Singapore. This gift bears much significance as the species, the Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, is the country’s national bird.

The species Rupicola peruviana is a medium sized bird and is native to the Andean cloud forests in South America such as Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. Considered to be one of the most spectacular birds in the world, the male is differentiated by its large disk-like crest and brilliant orange plumage.

WRS, which operates award winning wildlife parks, Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari and Singapore Zoo, has a long standing relationship with the Embassy of Peru in Singapore, which began in 2002 when both parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding to promote cultural and biodiversity exchange.

“WRS is privileged to have received these spectacular birds, with the kind assistance of the Embassy of Peru, that was instrumental in facilitating the necessary approval processes. Peru is home to one of the largest rainforests in the world with a rich biological diversity. By bringing species native to Peru into Singapore, we hope to share the beauty of the ecosystem and educate visitors on the importance of wildlife conservation through these animals,” said Mr Biswajit Guha, Director, Zoology, Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

“Peru is home to over 1,800 species of birds, the second highest in the world. The Andean Cock-of-the-Rock is Peru’s national bird and a representation of our country’s unique heritage. Through this exchange, we hope to introduce Singaporeans and other visitors to our rich and diverse wildlife as well as the importance of preserving our natural history,” said H.E. Armando Raúl Patiño Alvistur, Ambassador of Peru to Singapore.

Despite their striking appearance, these birds are difficult to spot in the wild as they are extremely shy and wary of their surroundings, preferring to stay in the trees to feed on fruits. This elusive forest inhabitant has an unusual mating ritual, which has become a highlight for tourists visiting Peru. Throughout the year, the males practice an elaborate dance to attract females to mate with. The dance is performed at a ‘lek’, a communal display area used by animals during courtship.

The birds are currently under quarantine at Jurong Bird Park and will eventually reside at the River Safari, WRS’ upcoming attraction slated to open in 2012. The birds will remain in their permanent habitat at River Safari’s Amazon River region, in a rainforest setting reminiscent of their Amazonian jungle home.

A Male Andean Cock-of-the-Rock

A Female Andean Cock-of-the-Rock

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