Koalas Chan, Idalia, Paddle and Pellita choose their Singapore names in time for Golden Jubilee weekend

Singapore, 5 August 2015 – Meet Cantik, Sayang, Nila, and Manja, otherwise known as Chan, Idalia, Paddle and Pellita. Seeking to blend in fully with locals, the koala quartet from Down Under gave their paw of approval and picked their Singapore names in a simple ceremony at Singapore Zoo just days before the nation celebrates her 50th anniversary of independence.

Over 250 suggestions were crowd sourced through a koala nicknaming campaign last month, and eight of the most suitable names were shortlisted. It was then left to the four ladies to pick the one they liked.

The marsupials have become hot favourites with park visitors since their arrival on 13 April this year. The koalas are a gift from Australia to Singapore on the occasion of Singapore’s 50th anniversary of independence, and the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Australia and Singapore.

Chan has chosen Cantik, which means beautiful in Malay and is similar to her original name. This lovely lady with the pink nose is a beauty in her own right. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Chan has chosen Cantik, which means beautiful in Malay and is similar to her original name. This lovely lady with the pink nose is a beauty in her own right. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Singapore Zoo’s littlest koala Idalia has decided she’d like to be called Sayang, which means love in Malay, and is often used as a term of endearment for a loved one. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Singapore Zoo’s littlest koala Idalia has decided she’d like to be called Sayang, which means love in Malay, and is often used as a term of endearment for a loved one. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Pellita’s choice of a local nickname is Manja, which means affectionate in Malay. Quite an appropriate name for someone who always nuzzles up to her keepers (especially during feeding time!). PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Pellita’s choice of a local nickname is Manja, which means affectionate in Malay. Quite an appropriate name for someone who always nuzzles up to her keepers (especially during feeding time!). PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Being the oldest koala in the group in Singapore Zoo, Paddle has decided to go historical and chose Nila as her nickname. Sang Nila Utama was thought to be the founder of the Kingdom of Singapura in 1299. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Being the oldest koala in the group in Singapore Zoo, Paddle has decided to go historical and chose Nila as her nickname. Sang Nila Utama was thought to be the founder of the Kingdom of Singapura in 1299. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

The koalas, together with the rest of the animal and keeper family at Wildlife Reserves Singapore, wish Singapore a Happy 50th Birthday. Majulah Singapura! Click here or on the image below to view a wildly special birthday video:

The rarest, most adorable, and stunning residents of Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo got together to extend the wildest birthday greeting in celebration of Singapore’s 50th birthday. These included orang utans, a falabella, and a Malay fish owl native to the island. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

The rarest, most adorable, and stunning residents of Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo got together to extend the wildest birthday greeting in celebration of Singapore’s 50th birthday. These included orang utans, a falabella, and a Malay fish owl native to the island. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.