WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE AND TRAFFIC JOIN HANDS TO BATTLE ILLEGAL WILDLIFE TRADE

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‘You Buy They Die’ anti-wildlife crime campaign targets public’s demand for wildlife products;
WRS and TRAFFIC sign memorandum of understanding

Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

Singapore, 7 March 2015 – Growing affluence, purchasing power and globalisation all spell disaster for Southeast Asia’s wildlife as rising demand for their skin, meat and body parts is driving thousands of species in the region towards extinction.

Illegal wildlife trade is a multi-billion dollar business, and said to be among the most profitable illicit trades, alongside drugs, arms and human trafficking. This trade often deliberately targets highly threatened animals to meet the demand for exotic meat, traditional medicine, pets and luxury items, directly causing drastic declines in wildlife numbers.

In a bid to increase awareness on the threats faced by animals in the wild, Wildlife Reserves Singapore and TRAFFIC in Southeast Asia have come together to launch the ‘You Buy They Die’ campaign to fight wildlife crime on 7 March 2015.

Taking on a somber tone that is distinctly different from Singapore Zoo, River Safari, and Jurong Bird Park’s usual child friendly setting, the year-long ‘You Buy They Die’ anti-wildlife crime campaign will see interpretative placed in the three parks to educate the public on the seriousness of wildlife crime and how their buying decisions can help support the conservation of endangered wildlife.

Ms Claire Chiang, Chairman, Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said, “Illegal wildlife trade often goes unnoticed in our day to day living, but can have devastating consequences, pushing many animal species to the brink of extinction. It is imperative that people understand how the diverse markets for animal parts can severely threaten the survival of these species. We hope that by presenting the facts to our visitors, people will be more conscious and do their part for the conservation of endangered wildlife.”

Campaign interpretative feature harsh but realistic scenarios that animals face in the wild—images of rhinoceros butchered for their horns, dead pangolin mothers pregnant with babies, freshly killed bear cub cut open to remove the gall bladder, and dead bats hung up to be sold as meat—as an appeal to curb demands.

In addition to urging people to refrain from wildlife trade, the campaign aims to help the public recognise instances of wildlife crime, and appeal to them to report such cases to local authorities.

To reach out to children, Singapore Zoo will introduce the Ranger Ooz Education Trail from 14 – 22 March 2015 that will teach children through interactive exhibits and activity sheets what they can do to fight illegal wildlife crime. All children entering WRS parks will be given a ranger awareness kit for them to take home.

In conjunction with the launch of ‘You Buy They Die’ campaign, WRS and TRAFFIC signed a Memorandum of Understanding to further strengthen and formalise their partnership.

“Fighting wildlife crime is everyone’s responsibility and we’re glad to see organisations like WRS take up the call. By investing funds and using their powerful reach to galvanize public support, they’re giving the effort an immense boost.” said Dr. Chris R. Shepherd, Regional Director for TRAFFIC in Southeast Asia. “The key message to the public really is that everyone has a role to play in bringing about an end to the illegal wildlife trade.”

The two organisations have previously collaborated on ad hoc projects to curb wildlife crime, such as in-depth research on illegal wildlife trade, and helping regional authorities in wildlife conservation efforts through the provision of identification guides and training.

Committed to fighting illegal and unsustainable wildlife trade and ensuring the conservation of threatened wildlife, WRS is Singapore’s designated rescued wildlife centre for live confiscated wildlife. It has received and managed confiscated wildlife from the governing authority for over two decades.

RUB OFF SOME GOAT LUCK AT SINGAPORE ZOO AND NIGHT SAFARI THIS LUNAR NEW YEAR

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Eight auspicious goat kids born in Singapore Zoo and exotic goat species in Night Safari will greet visitors

Singapore Zoo keepers Mohd Hanafi and Amy Chandra show off three of the newest members of Singapore Zoo’s domestic goat herd which arrived just in time to usher in the Year of the Goat. Since 1 Jan 2015, Singapore Zoo has welcomed eight baby goats. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Singapore Zoo keepers Mohd Hanafi and Amy Chandra show off three of the newest members of Singapore Zoo’s domestic goat herd which arrived just in time to usher in the Year of the Goat. Since 1 Jan 2015, Singapore Zoo has welcomed eight baby goats. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Singapore, 11 February 2015 – Usher in the Year of the Goat at Singapore Zoo and Night Safari to marvel at the beauty and grace of this year’s zodiac animal, and learn all about the elegant species.

Singapore Zoo

Originating in Egypt, the domestic goat can now be found, either farmed or feral, in every continent except Antarctica. Goats are able to thrive in almost any habitat including savanna, deserts, scrub forests and mountains. This Chinese New Year, learn more about goats and their wild cousins at the Goat Awareness booth at Singapore Zoo. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Originating in Egypt, the domestic goat can now be found, either farmed or feral, in every continent except Antarctica. Goats are able to thrive in almost any habitat including savanna, deserts, scrub forests and mountains. This Chinese New Year, learn more about goats and their wild cousins at the Goat Awareness booth at Singapore Zoo. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Singapore Zoo has welcomed the birth of eight goat kids in the last two months, an auspicious sign of a bountiful year to come. The gamboling goat kids are looking forward to charming visitors to Singapore Zoo this festive season as part of the Chinese New Year celebrations.

Visitors looking to rub off some goat luck can capture some precious shots with this year’s zodiac animal, watch goat enrichment, or feed the goats. In addition, children can learn more about goats and their wild cousins at a specially curated Goat Awareness Booth. All goat-themed Chinese New Year activities will run from 18-22 February.

For activity details, visit Chinese New Year Celebrations at Singapore Zoo.

Night Safari

The ‘snake-horned’ markhor is named for their spiraling horns, which can grow up to 160cm, that adorn the males’ heads. This species are threatened by habitat loss in their native environments. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

The ‘snake-horned’ markhor is named for their spiraling horns, which can grow up to 160cm, that adorn the males’ heads. This species are threatened by habitat loss in their native environments. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Over at Night Safari, visitors can marvel at the wilder cousins of the domestic goats – the ‘snakehorned’ markhor, handsome Himalayan tahr, ‘blue’ bharal and rare mouflon.

The Himalayan tahr thrives on rugged alpine mountains from northern India to Bhutan, and male tahrs have a long shaggy mane in winter. This species are threatened by habitat loss in their native environments. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

The Himalayan tahr thrives on rugged alpine mountains from northern India to Bhutan, and male tahrs have a long shaggy mane in winter. This species are threatened by habitat loss in their native environments. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

While only the markhor and tahr are considered true goats, the bharal and mouflon are wild sheep that are no less nimble and sure-footed, making their homes in mountainous and rocky regions. These wild goats and sheep can be encountered along the Night Safari tram route.

For activity details, visit Chinese New Year Celebrations at Night Safari

The goats in Mandai enjoy the centre stage and look forward to welcoming visitors over the Lunar New Year holidays.

HUMAN RACE FOR ANIMALS ATTRACTS OVER 9,000 AT SAFARI ZOO RUN 2015

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Double the fun in seventh installment of popular run, with dedicated days for competitive and fun runners

(Centre, on stage) Guest-of-Honour Mrs Claire Nazar, Council Member, Families for Life, flags off the Safari Zoo Run Fastest Kid Race. Flanking her are Mr Lee Meng Tat, CEO, Wildlife Reserves Singapore and Ms Isabel Cheng, CMO, Wildlife Reserves Singapore. Mrs Nazar and her family later joined the 6,000-strong crowd for the 6km Safari Zoo Fun Run, in a show of sporting fun and family bonding. PHOTO CREDIT: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

(Centre, on stage) Guest-of-Honour Mrs Claire Nazar, Council Member, Families for Life, flags off the Safari Zoo Run Fastest Kid Race. Flanking her are Mr Lee Meng Tat, CEO, Wildlife Reserves Singapore and Ms Isabel Cheng, CMO, Wildlife Reserves Singapore. Mrs Nazar and her family later joined the 6,000-strong crowd for the 6km Safari Zoo Fun Run, in a show of sporting fun and family bonding. PHOTO CREDIT: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Singapore, 9 February 2015 — A human herd of more than 9,000 dashed, loped and strode down Mandai’s lush corridors in this weekend’s Safari Zoo Run 2015, which was conceived seven years ago to commemorate Ah Meng, Singapore Zoo’s iconic Sumatran orang utan.

For the first time ever, Safari Zoo Run was held over two days. Over 3,000 avid runners took on the 12km or 6km Safari Zoo Challenge on Saturday, while a 6,000 strong crowd of enthusiastic participants enjoyed the Fun Run route through Night Safari and Singapore Zoo at a more leisurely pace this morning.

Families taking part in the Safari Zoo Run Stroller Walk slowed their pace to get a closer look at Singapore Zoo’s giraffes during Safari Zoo Run 2015. PHOTO CREDIT: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Families taking part in the Safari Zoo Run Stroller Walk slowed their pace to get a closer look at Singapore Zoo’s giraffes during Safari Zoo Run 2015. PHOTO CREDIT: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

Another new feature this year was the roaring finale that awaited Sunday’s runners — the family-friendly Safari Zoo Run Carnival, which brought together exciting stage acts, a bazaar, educational stations and animal photography with some of the parks’ animal stars.

Safari Zoo Run is dedicated to the memory of Ah Meng, the zoo’s iconic Sumatran orangutan, who died of old age in February 2008. A part of the proceeds from the event will benefit the endangered wildlife under the care of Night Safari and Singapore Zoo.

As participants of Safari Zoo Run’s Fun Run stopped to take photos of the orang utans, the cheeky primates had a vertical race of their own, to their treetop playground. Safari Zoo Run is dedicated to the memory of Ah Meng, the zoo’s iconic Sumatran orangutan, who died of old age in February 2008. PHOTO CREDIT: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

As participants of Safari Zoo Run’s Fun Run stopped to take photos of the orang utans, the cheeky primates had a vertical race of their own, to their treetop playground. Safari Zoo Run is dedicated to the memory of Ah Meng, the zoo’s iconic Sumatran orangutan, who died of old age in February 2008. PHOTO CREDIT: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

ANIMAL FRIENDS WISH ONE AND ALL A PROSPEROUS LUNAR NEW YEAR

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Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo usher in the Year of the Goat with festive activities from 18 to 22 Feb 2015

Take photos with Singapore Zoo’s new kids on the block at selected timings during the Lunar New Year.  Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

Take photos with Singapore Zoo’s new kids on the block at selected timings during the Lunar New Year. Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

4 February 2015, Singapore – This Lunar New Year, usher in the Year of the Goat with wild animal friends at Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo and take part in a herd of activities from 18 to 22 February.

Be greeted by an a-baa-ndance of surprises as the parks get decked out for the Lunar New Year with creative plant displays, festive animal enrichment and up-close encounters, and photo moments with adorable baby goats! Be sure to catch the acrobatic lion dance performances and meet the prosperity mascots.

Animal Encounters
Goat Kids Photography at Singapore Zoo: Be charmed by the boisterous and adorable herd of young goats at Singapore Zoo, and witness an entourage of six baby goats (called kids) prancing alongside their keepers against the scenic backdrop of Upper Seletar Reservoir. Be sure to snap a souvenir shot with this year’s zodiac animal!

Wings of Asia Tour at Jurong Bird Park: Tour the park’s latest attraction and discover threatened species such as the beautiful Bali mynah and Luzon bleeding-heart dove, in an aviary featuring one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of Asian birds. Stand a chance to win ang pows during a Q&A session at the end of the 15-minute tour.

Festive High Flyers Show at Jurong Bird Park: Lucky visitors will receive red packets delivered by Sassy the sulphur-crested cockatoo, and well-wishes of ‘Gong Xi Fa Cai’ from Amigo the yellow-naped Amazon.

River Safari’s squirrel monkeys get into the festive mood with ang pows filled with treats this Lunar New Year. Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

River Safari’s squirrel monkeys get into the festive mood with ang pows filled with treats this Lunar New Year. Photo Credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

Festive Animal Enrichment
Special treats for the animals serve as enrichment and encourage them to display their natural behaviours. If you’re lucky, you can catch them at their best as they chomp, dig, and crunch their way through their festive delights.

Jurong Bird Park: Fly in to the Breeding and Research Centre to watch ‘bird nannies’ giving young parrots enrichment such as ang pows filled with treats and oranges.

Night Safari: Look out for Asian elephants, Malayan tapirs and Indian rhinos enjoying festive goodies during the tram ride. Then trek the walking trails and peer at Himalayan tahrs, Malayan tigers, fishing cats, common palm civets and wallabies as they uncover hidden treats.

River Safari: Catch the cute antics of giant pandas, red pandas, crab-eating macaques and squirrel monkeys as they receive giant ang pows.

Southern Lion Dance
A pair of spectacular Southern lions will shimmy their way atop high poles in a high-octane performance at Jurong Bird Park, River Safari and Singapore Zoo. As the sun sets, a pair of dazzling LED-lit Southern lions will light up the sky at Night Safari. This traditional mix of martial art, acrobatic and stage performance was introduced to Southeast Asia more than a century ago, and remains a mainstay of Lunar New Year celebrations.

Prosperity Mascot Appearances
No Lunar New Year is complete without good fortune from the prosperity mascots! Fu Lu Shou and the God of Fortune will make appearances at the four wildlife parks. Visitors at River Safari can also look out for Kai Kai, Jia Jia, red panda and golden pheasant mascots in their festive finery, as they spread the joy with 88 lucky ang pows daily.

Spin the Wheel at River Safari
Don’t miss out on the chance to win attractive prizes at River Safari! Simply present your admission ticket for an opportunity to spin the wheel, with a total of 88 prizes to be won daily.

For more information on activity details, please visit Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo.

WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE TO ADOPT NEW ELEPHANT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM

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New system deemed to provide higher degree of safety; Overhaul to be implemented in phases

Singapore, 15 December 2014 – Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) will be phasing in the protected contact elephant management system for all elephants in Night Safari and Singapore Zoo over the next few years.

When fully in place, all staff training and interaction with elephants under the protected contact system will be conducted through a physical safety barrier. The protected contact management system is based on positive reinforcement where animals are motivated by rewards such as food.

The two parks will be among the first zoological institutions in Asia to implement the protected contact management system for all elephants in its collection. Among the modern zoo community, this method is currently deemed to be the safest way to manage elephants while ensuring proper animal care and welfare.

Dr Cheng Wen-Haur, Chief Life Sciences Officer, WRS, said, “The decision to adopt the protected contact management system was made after an internal review by our elephant managers and healthcare experts, who found that this system of management offers a safer work environment for the elephant keepers. Importantly, the new system will continue to allow our keepers access to the elephants for their daily care, although separated by a safety barrier.”

The complete implementation of the protected contact system will take three to five years as it will involve major redesign and construction of the elephant exhibits, back-of-house facilities as well as re-training of our elephants and elephant keepers.

The first phase of moving towards the protected contact system will be the cessation of programmes involving direct visitor contact with the elephants. From 5 January 2015, elephant rides and other activities where elephants are taken out of their exhibits will cease at the zoo. This is to allow the elephants to spend more time in the exhibits and to socialise among themselves.

Visitors to Singapore Zoo will still be able to enjoy the Elephants at Work and Play show (available twice daily at 11.30am and 3.30pm), and take part in elephant feeding sessions which happens after each show.

Dr Cheng continued, “Providing meaningful interactive opportunities with our animals is one of the most valuable services we bring to our visitors. Our new elephant exhibits will be designed to enable up-close encounters, and give us the chance to offer new behind-the-scenes experiences.”

Wildlife Reserves Singapore gets industry nod at Singapore Experience Awards 2014

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Night Safari wins Best Attraction and receives Exceptional Achievement Award;
WRS receives four awards for the year

Singapore, 31 October 2013 – Night Safari wins Best Attraction at Singapore Experience Awards for the third consecutive year, bringing the biggest cheer for the Wildlife Reserves Singapore team who walked away with four accolades at the Singapore Experience Awards 2014.

In a year where Night Safari celebrates its 20th anniversary, the world’s first wildlife park for nocturnal animals was recognised for providing the ‘Best Visitor Attraction Experience’, making this its 12th honour in this category. As it is Night Safari’s third consecutive year winning this accolade, the park also received an Exceptional Achievement Award under the Special Recognition category.

Mr Lee Meng Tat, CEO of Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said: “It is a great tribute to receive these awards and the team is both honoured and euphoric. We are especially happy about the Night Safari win. The home-grown attraction celebrates her 20th anniversary this year, and being recognised yet again as the Best Visitor attraction is testament of the team’s hard work and commitment to providing the ultimate night-time wildlife experience to visitors.”

Being the world’s first nocturnal zoo, Night Safari’s unique offering and stellar reputation has made her a firm favourite and iconic attraction for both foreign and local visitors. Through the years, the team has worked hard to maintain this world class establishment.

Hosted and presented by the Singapore Tourism Board, the Singapore Experience Awards is Singapore tourism’s highest accolade; celebrating the luminaries who constantly innovate and create distinctive and compelling Singapore experiences.

In the awards category for marketing and media, ‘River Safari: The River is Calling’ won the Most Innovative Marketing Idea. This award celebrates marketing and promotional efforts through creative campaigns and media that showcase the compelling sights and sounds of Singapore.

In the awards category for individuals, a Wildlife Reserves Singapore employee from Singapore Zoo, Divine Real Clenista Santos walked away with the award for Best Customer Service (Retail).

Tan Han Qiang and Bryan Lim Kuan Loong were also nominated by the public for their exemplary performance at the Singapore Zoo and Jurong Bird Park respectively, and were finalists in the Best Customer Service (Attractions).

Results were unveiled at a gala presentation ceremony this evening. Finalists in each category were nominated by industry players and experts, with the final winner picked by a panel of judges.

Mr Lee added, “Receiving industry recognition at the Singapore Experience Awards is a great honour, and it no doubt spurs the team on to continue giving our best efforts to provide our guests with memorable wildlife experience in Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari, and Singapore Zoo.”

WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE PRESENTS WORLD’S RAREST BABIES TO MARK WORLD ANIMAL DAY 2014

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Critically endangered Sunda pangolin, cotton-top tamarin and southern river terrapin
among animal births this year; giant river otters produce two babies.

Radin, Night Safari’s third and newest Sunda pangolin baby, rests in the protective clutch of his mother Nita. Found throughout primary and secondary forests of Southeast Asia, Sunda pangolins, also known as Malayan pangolins, are critically endangered as populations in the wild are experiencing rapid decline. Photo credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Radin, Night Safari’s third and newest Sunda pangolin baby, rests in the protective clutch of his mother Nita. Found throughout primary and secondary forests of Southeast Asia, Sunda pangolins, also known as Malayan pangolins, are critically endangered as populations in the wild are experiencing rapid decline.
Photo credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Singapore, 2 October 2014 – To mark World Animal Day this year, Wildlife Reserves Singapore announced the arrival of some of the world’s rarest babies, among them the critically endangered Sunda pangolin that is native to Singapore.

Between January and August 2014, over 400 animal babies were born or hatched in Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo. Nearly one in four babies belongs to animals listed as ‘threatened’ in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species* and these include the Bali mynah, Javan langur, proboscis monkey and giant anteater.

The birth of a critically endangered Sunda pangolin in Night Safari is one of the most iconic births for WRS as the species is native to Singapore and is the logo for the Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund. Night Safari is the world’s first zoological institution to house the elusive, solitary, nocturnal creature which in recent years has been driven closer to extinction by illegal animal trafficking, habitat loss and being hunted for their meat and scales at an unsustainable level. This is the third successful birth of a Sunda pangolin in WRS since 2011.

Another exciting development comes from the giant river otters at River Safari which displays this rare species for the first time in Asia. While their first pup in 2013 did not survive, the giant otters are now proud parents of two new pups. Parents Carlos and Carmen have become more experienced in raising their young and have started teaching the pups how to swim.

Giant river otter Carmen brings her pups for a swimming lesson at River Safari – the first zoological institution in Asia to display this endangered species. Photo credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Giant river otter Carmen brings her pups for a swimming lesson at River Safari – the first zoological institution in Asia to display this endangered species.
Photo credit: Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Over at Jurong Bird Park, a Goliath palm cockatoo is successfully bred for the first time. Goliath palm cockatoos have one of the lowest hand-rearing success rates among the parrot species due to their specialised diet. The park also successfully bred eight critically endangered Bali mynahs. Conservation efforts for the species intensified in 2010 – the year which marked the start of a partnership with Indonesia’s Begawan Foundation. Bred specifically to increase the off-site numbers of Bali mynahs in the wild, all progenies will eventually be sent back to Bali.

Singapore Zoo is ecstatic to welcome the births of two critically endangered species to its collection: the cotton-top tamarin and southern river terrapin. Singapore Zoo also saw the birth of an endangered proboscis monkey this May and the park continues to house the largest collection of proboscis monkeys in the world, outside of Indonesia.

Dr Cheng Wen-Haur, Chief Life Sciences Officer, Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said: “The world is undergoing an unprecedented loss of wildlife as a direct result of human related activities. Each of these births represents a precious glimmer of hope in our effort to help save the planet’s biodiversity. Many of them are part of coordinated conservation breeding programmes to safeguard against extinction in the wild. All of them are invaluable ambassadors for their species
to connect our visitors to the need for their protection.”

*International Union for Conservation of Nature

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