YOU CAN BE AN OLYMPIAN TOO AT SINGAPORE ZOO THIS JUNE

JOIN IN THE RACE FOR THE SUPER SURVIVOR AT ZOOLYMPIX 2012!

Pollinator Pals is back by popular demand from Zoolympix 2011!
Indulge in face/body painting and wear your favourite animal on you at Zoolympix 2012

Singapore, 4 June 2012 — Zoolympix 2012 celebrates the survival of the fittest in the animal kingdom. This year, we highlight the champions in the world of primates. Get ready to pit your skills against our animal Olympians in a series of survival challenges that test your speed, agility, dexterity and brain power!

Race to the six game stations around the Zoo and redeem a stamp each time you successfully clear the challenge. Participants who achieve the highest scores of the day at each station will be inducted into the Zoolympix Hall of Fame. All participants also get to take home a souvenir in the Sure-win Lucky Dip and stand a chance at winning attractive prizes in the Grand Lucky draw.

For those who prefer a more relaxing option, be sure to join in our face painting and badge making activities or swing by the awareness booth to discover amazing primate facts!

Details:
Date: 16 – 24 June 2012
Venue: Singapore Zoo (various locations), 80 Mandai Lake Road, Singapore 729826
Time: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Fee: $2 per Zoolympix passport (available at Registration booth at start of TreetopsTrail)
Note: Normal admission rates of $20.00 for adults and $13.00 for children between 3-12 years apply

Activities:
Awareness Booth: All about Primates!
Singapore Zoo is home to 39 unique species of primates, many of which are endangered. This diverse group boasts a range of adaptions such as opposable thumbs and toes, as well as binocular and colour vision, which truly make them one of the strongest contenders in the survival game.

But even our closest cousins, known for their intelligence and dexterity, have fallen prey to human activities such as logging and hunting. Come learn all about the last three remaining primates in Singapore – the slow loris, long-tailed macaque and banded leaf monkey, and find out more about Singapore Zoo’s primate conservation efforts, as well as how you can do your part to help our closest cousins!

There will also be a special game station that will test just how much you know about them.

Venue: Start of Treetops Trail

Survival Challenge Stations

1. Tools Thumbs Up!
The thumb is an often under-appreciated part of our body, but do you know how important it is in our daily functions? Certain primates, such as the old world monkeys and great apes, in addition to humans, are some of the only animals equipped with opposable thumbs, which are essential for fine and accurate motor skills.

In this game, participants will pit their dexterity against that of an orang utan’s and pick out insects from a piece of log, using just a stick.

Venue: Sumatran Orang Utan exhibit (near island free-ranging area)

2. Blind Burrowers
Naked mole rats are living proof that beauty is truly skin-deep. Though rather unattractive, these rodents come out tops in the battle of survival, living up to four times as long as their rodent relatives.

Come experience the hidden life of a naked mole rat as you locate all the carrots in the tunnel in the shortest time, blindfolded!

Venue: Naked Mole Rat exhibit

3. Knuckle Knock-Out!
Ever wondered how chimpanzees, our closest living relatives, live, work and play? Well, you can start by learning about how they move around. Apes such as the chimpanzee, bonobo and gorilla often engage in knuckle-walking – a trait that allows them to use their hands for the dual purpose of moving on land while still being able to retain their long fingers for climbing trees and manipulating food.

Armed with gloves, participants get to experience life as a chimpanzee as they navigate a route on their knuckles and feet in the shortest time possible.

Venue: Boat Dock 2

4. Pollinator Pals

Back by popular demand from Zoolympix 2011, Pollinator Pals challenges participants to race against time and transfer as much ‘pollen’ as possible to flowers within 30 seconds.

Pollinators like butterflies and bees are essential in ensuring the reproduction and survival of plants. How well will you fare as one of these fascinating fluttery creatures? Find out here!

Venue: Garden with a View

5. Fast-as a Patas!
How fast can you move on all fours? Well, the patas monkey can hit up to 55km/h! That’s faster than the swiftest human being on Earth (44km/h) on two feet!

Come pit your speed against this amazing monkey as you race your way through an obstacle course to cross hurdles, collect fruit items and sprint to the finishing line as fast as you can!

Venue: Garden Pavilion

6. Mammoth Memory
Think you have a good memory? Pit your brainpower against our elephants – known as one of the animals with the best memory skills in the world.

In this game, participants get to see how they fare against the elephant, by being challenged with the task of remembering the key places in an elephant’s habitat.

Venue: Elephants of Asia (Ele-fun Play Area)

ROOTING FOR A REPTILE ROMANCE AT SINGAPORE ZOO

KEEPERS RELOCATE FEMALE FALSE GHARIAL TO MEET POTENTIAL MATE

SINGAPORE, 27 Jul 2010 – It took the strength of more than 10 keepers at the Singapore Zoo to move a 3 metre long false gharial from her Bornean Marsh home early this month.

The 160kg reptile that has resided in the Zoo for the past 10 years was relocated to another exhibit because she was being bullied by a larger female. To keep the two females apart, keepers decided to move her to the Treetops Trail exhibit which is home to a 5m long, 600kg male. They hope the two massive crocodilians will take a liking to each other, and start breeding.

“By introducing these potential mates, we hope to diversify the gene pool and increase our numbers. Not much is known about the biology of this species in the wild. Currently, the estimated wild population is fewer than 2,500 individuals, so captive breeding could play a vital role in the recovery of this species” said Mr Subash Chandran, Curator, Singapore Zoo. Currently, Singapore Zoo houses 11 false gharials.

The false gharial or tomistoma, is a unique crocodilian that shares features with both the
Indian gharial and other crocodile species, including the saltwater crocodile. These reptiles have slightly thicker snouts compared to the Indian gharial, whose thin snout helps it catch fish underwater. Unlike the Indian gharial which feeds exclusively on fish, the false gharial also preys on small mammals such as monkeys and fruit bats. The false gharial is one of the largest crocodile species, reaching lengths of 5-6 metres and it also produces the largest eggs of any crocodile species.

Throughout zoos around the world, there has been little success with the captive breeding of false gharials. Following efforts to breed this species at the Singapore Zoo in recent years, mating of these unique crocodiles and egg laying by the females has been observed. However, the Zoo has yet to successfully hatch a baby false gharial.

The false gharial has a low population density and is classified as an endangered species. Once widely distributed in Indonesia, Malaysia and possibly Thailand, this species has declined throughout its range. Small remnant populations remain in Java and Peninsular Malaysia and there are low densities of the species in Sarawak, Sumatra and Kalimantan. The false gharial is now extinct in Thailand.

While the main threat to this species is habitat destruction, intensive hunting in some areas has also contributed to its decline. Other threats come from fishing practices, with false gharials either becoming tangled in fishing nets or losing their food source to local fisherman.

Singapore Zoo keepers hold the false gharial in place to calm and restrain the animal to ensure it doesn't injure itself or anyone around it
Singapore Zoo keepers moving the false gharial into a transportation container
Singapore Zoo keepers transporting the false gharial from the Bornean Marsh exhibit to the Treetops Trail