WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE URGES PUBLIC TO TAKE A STAND AGAINST ILLEGAL WILDLIFE TRADE

Real-life inspired images and anecdotes of animals expose bleak nature of illegal wildlife trade;
Wildlife Reserves Singapore calls for public to take action

YouBuyTheyDie - Cockatoo

SINGAPORE, 10 March 2016 – Cockatoos stuffed in bottles to be smuggled as pets, and pangolin babies taken from their mothers’ wombs to meet the insatiable demand for exotic medicine and food delicacies—these are disturbing but true accounts of animals being transported for the illegal wildlife trade. By highlighting the fate of these animals in the second instalment of the You Buy, They Die campaign, Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) hopes to rally the public to take a stand against the illegal wildlife trade.

From 10 March to 6 April 2016, commuters taking buses and trains will come across harsh but realistic images of animals being transported for the illegal wildlife trade: cockatoos stuffed in plastic bottles where two out of five do not survive, and pangolins crushed against limbs and choking under mangled bodies. These visuals can be seen on train windows and bus stops around the island, as well as educational interpretive at Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo.

Dr Sonja Luz, Director, Conservation and Research, WRS, said: “The illegal wildlife trade is a multi-billion dollar business with devastating consequences for wild animal populations and ecosystems. Many species suffer greatly in the process. With this campaign, we hope to empower the public to take action and help us change their fate. Our ultimate goal is to stop the demand and that will only happen if everyone understands the problem, spreads the word and takes action by making informed decisions when offered wildlife or wildlife products.”

YouBuyTheyDie - Pangolin

To encourage engagement, the advertisements contain QR codes for commuters to scan with their mobile phones, immerse in a 360˚ experience that showcases the brutal smuggling process, and put an end to the cycle of death by declaring their pledges at ChangeTheirFate.sg. Those who pledge can immediately see the brighter future they have made for wildlife, with visuals of animals seen in their natural habitats and maintaining balance in the ecosystem.

Rising affluence, increasing purchasing power and globalisation all spell trouble for wildlife as the growing demand for exotic meat, body parts, traditional medicine, pets and luxury items, directly causes drastic declines in wildlife numbers.

Possible Singapore is the creative agency behind the campaign. The latest initiative is WRS’ second instalment of the You Buy, They Die anti-wildlife crime campaign launched in 2015 to educate the public on how their buying decisions can support the conservation of endangered wildlife. Members of the public who have information on illegal wildlife activities are advised to make a report immediately to the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA). In addition, they can also download the free Wildlife Witness App, created in partnership with the Taronga Conservation Society Australia and wildlife monitoring network TRAFFIC.

SCALING UP CONSERVATION EFFORTS FOR SUNDA PANGOLINS ON WORLD PANGOLIN DAY

Night Safari Singapore is home to the world’s first conservation breeding programme
for Sunda pangolins; Experts gather to discuss species conservation efforts

Image 1 (left): Sunda pangolin babies hitch a ride on mom’s tail when they are young. Not much is known about these elusive creatures but Night Safari intends to change that by supporting several projects to learn more about the behaviour and ecology of the world’s only scaly mammal.

Image 2 (right): When threatened, pangolins curl into a ball, making them easy targets for poachers. In the past 10 years alone, it is believed that more than one million pangolins have been illegally traded.
PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE, 18 February 2016Night Safari is scaling up on efforts to save the world’s most heavily trafficked mammal from extinction, through a number of pangolin conservation and research programmes.

The global trade of pangolins has reached epic proportions and it is believed that more than one million have been traded illegally in the past decade alone. International trade is largely driven by demand in China and Vietnam where pangolins are considered a delicacy and poached extensively for their scales, meat and skin for use in traditional medicine.

World Pangolin Day, which is celebrated on 20 February 2016, aims to raise awareness on the plight of these scaly mammals which are poached more than elephants and rhinos combined. Organised in conjunction with World Pangolin Day, a group of dedicated pangolin conservationists met with the Wildlife Reserve Singapore (WRS) Conservation & Research team in Singapore this week (Tuesday, 16 February 2016) to review the ongoing research efforts for Singapore’s remaining pangolins.

Through its conservation fund, WRS is supporting a number of projects which include tracking pangolins in the wild with radio and GPS tags and training conservation sniffer dogs to help with local and regional field efforts for wild pangolins.

In addition, Night Safari is home to the world’s first conservation breeding programme for the Sunda pangolin which is listed as critically endangered on the IUCN* Red List of Threatened Species. It currently houses seven Sunda pangolins in its protection, two of which were born under human care.

Dr Sonja Luz, Director of Conservation & Research, Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said, “The plight facing pangolins is devastating and if we want to win the battle against the illegal wildlife trade, we must educate people and inspire compassion and respect for nature and animals. At WRS, we have made this our mission, and we have the unique opportunity to study and learn more about this elusive animal right at our doorstep.”

She added, “Our local research and conservation efforts contribute to a better understanding of the biology and urban ecology of pangolins. Through our captive breeding efforts, we are able to raise more awareness about the amazing creatures.”
A Singapore pangolin working group consisting local stakeholders has also been formed to gather feedback on outreach and research activities to maximise conservation efforts.

Image 3_Pangolin Book _WRS (smaller)To further reach out to children, WRS has published a book titled ‘Why did the pangolin cross the road?’ (left). This illustrated anecdote is inspired by one of the seven pangolins in Night Safari’s collection, and features English and Mandarin texts.

On World Pangolin Day, Night Safari has lined up two special sessions of Keeper Talks where visitors will have the opportunity to get up close with the park’s Sunda pangolin. The pangolins can be found on the Fishing Cat Trail at Night Safari.

WOW WILD LEARN PROGRAMME TO PROMOTE USE OF CHINESE LANGUAGE

A collaboration between the Committee to Promote Chinese Language Learning
and Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Left: Teaching and learning the Chinese Language is set to become more fun and interactive for pre-school teachers and students with the Wow Wild Learning programme, which consists of a series of workshops, activities, and supplementary readings revolving around a learning journey at River Safari. PHOTO CREDIT: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

Right: Under the Wow Wild Learn programme, Wildlife Reserves Singapore will equip pre-school teachers with nuggets of wildlife information and teaching resources, like a panda storybook, to turn the River Safari into a living classroom for their students. PHOTO CREDIT: Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

SINGAPORE, 16 February 2016 – Teaching and learning the Chinese Language is set to become even more fun and interactive for pre-school teachers and their students with the Wow Wild Learn programme (娃娃游园乐), which consists of a series of workshops, activities, and supplementary readings revolving around a learning journey at River Safari. The pilot initiative is a collaboration between the Committee to Promote Chinese Language Learning (CPCLL) and Wildlife Reserves Singapore.

Ms May Lok, Director of Education, Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said, “Education for young children has always been, and will always be, a key pillar for parks managed by Wildlife Reserves Singapore. River Safari is no exception. With the pilot Wow Wild Learn programme, we aim to bring the Chinese Language to life in our wildlife environment, and make learning enjoyable for both pre-school teachers and their students.”

Mr Ang Hin Kee, Leader of the Pre-School Working Group, CPCLL, said, “We hope to equip pre-school Chinese Language teachers with more knowledge and material to conduct the learning of Chinese Language in an engaging manner. Parents also play an important role and we want to provide opportunities for them to interact and learn Mandarin together with their children.”

Under the Wow Wild Learn programme, Wildlife Reserves Singapore will offer a half-day training workshop for pre-school teachers to equip them with the necessary knowledge and nuggets of wildlife information to turn River Safari into a living classroom for their students. In addition, the Wildlife Reserves Singapore Education team has also developed activity sheets and two pictorial books as resources for the teachers. Pre-school centres that are successful in their application for the programme will receive subsidized funding from the CPCLL, capped at $700 per centre.

Upon completion of the workshop, pre-school teachers can register their students for the “River Safari Flows to School: I’m a Panda Keeper” outreach programme, where the children’s close encounters with River Safari’s lovable pandas Kai Kai and Jia Jia will give them an interactive experience in learning both the Chinese Language and the importance of protecting wildlife.

To promote parent-child bonding, teachers will encourage parents to plan activities that facilitate interaction with their pre-school children in Mandarin. Each student will also receive a set of books on the pandas Kai Kai and Jia Jia.

The Wow Wild Learn programme will be held from 1 April to 31 October 2016. Registration is open to all pre-schools registered under the Early Childhood Development Agency. Invitation has been sent by the CPCLL to eligible pre-school centres, and there has been overwhelming response.

ANIMAL RESIDENTS ENJOY FESTIVE TREATS TO USHER IN YEAR OF THE MONKEY

Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo roll out enrichment goodies
for wild residents from 6 to 9 Feb 2016

SINGAPORE, 22 January 2016 – The wild residents at Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo are ready to swing into the Year of the Monkey with festive enrichment treats specially created by doting keepers. From 6 to 9 February 2016, guests at the four wildlife parks can catch the amusing antics of animals, including a singing parrot wishing everyone “Gong Xi Fa Cai” and giant pandas enjoying their favourite food from larger-than-life ang pows.

For some serious monkey business, head down to Singapore Zoo which is home to over 30 monkey species. Some of the world’s rarest monkeys like the cotton-top tamarin, Javan langur and golden-headed lion tamarin will receive festive enrichment treats that tease their curiosity and test their problem-solving skills. As the monkeys chomp, dig and crunch their way through festive delights such as oranges, nuts and seeds, guests can marvel at their nimble and agile movements, adore their stunning features, or just snap away for a photo memory.

Other festivities across the four wildlife parks include acrobatic lion dance performances, meet and greet sessions with God of Fortune and Fu Lu Shou mascots, and a Zoodiac trail for guests to discover their fortune forecast in the Year of the Monkey.

CNY Enrichment - Golden-headed lion tamarins @Singapore Zoo 1  CNY Enrichment - Golden-headed lion tamarins @Singapore Zoo 2
Images 1-2: This Lunar New Year, swing over to Singapore Zoo and catch the cute antics of palm-sized monkeys such as the endangered golden-headed lion tamarins as they chomp, dig and crunch their way through festive delights. All four wildlife parks – Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo – will roll out festive activities for guests from 6 to 9 February 2016. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

CNY Enrichment - Javan langurs @Singapore Zoo 1   CNY Enrichment - Javan langurs @Singapore Zoo 2
Images 3-4: This Lunar New Year, swing over to Singapore Zoo and catch the cute antics of monkeys such as the threatened Javan langur enjoying festive enrichment treats that tease their curiosity and test their problem-solving skills. All four wildlife parks – Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo – will roll out festive activities for guests from 6 to 9 February 2016. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

ACTIVITIES AT A GLANCECNY Table.jpg

 

For more information, visit wildcny.sg

 

JURONG BIRD PARK, NIGHT SAFARI, RIVER SAFARI AND SINGAPORE ZOO REPORT OVER 700 ANIMAL BIRTHS AND HATCHINGS IN 2015

Over a third of the babies are native or Southeast Asian species, affirming the parks’ bid to conserve biodiversity in Singapore and Southeast Asia

WRS SZ - Chomel, a critically endangered Sumatran orangutan, gave birth to a male on 16 September 2015. Orangutans are Singapore Zoo’s flagship species - 2
Over 700 animal babies were born or hatched in Wildlife Reserves Singapore parks in 2015. Chomel, a critically endangered Sumatran orangutan, gave birth on 16 September 2015. The male baby is Chomel’s second offspring—her first son, Bino, is now five years old. Young orangutans will remain with their mother for several years until they learn the necessary skills to live independently. Orangutans are Singapore Zoo’s flagship species. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Singapore, 12 January 2016 – More than 700 furry, feathery and scaly young across 150 species were born or hatched in Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari, and Singapore Zoo in 2015. Among them, over 40 species are listed as threatened under the *IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

Dr Cheng Wen-Haur, Deputy CEO and Chief Life Sciences Officer, Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said, “Each of these births and hatchings is significant and is part of Wildlife Reserves Singapore’s efforts to conserve threatened wildlife, particularly in Singapore and Southeast Asia. Breeding under human care allows us to maintain sustainable populations without having to collect from the wild, and our living collection serves to inspire positive actions in people to conserve our environment and biodiversity.”

Among the most exciting births of the year is that of a critically endangered Sumatran orangutan born on 16 September 2015. The primate is the great-grandson of Singapore Zoo’s late icon, Ah Meng. To date, over 40 orangutans have been born in Singapore Zoo. To facilitate the breeding of these charismatic apes and ensure genetic diversity, orangutans born in the park have been sent to zoological institutions in Malaysia, India, Vietnam, Japan, Australia and New Zealand as part of a worldwide exchange programme.

WRS SZ - Ayana, which means blossoming beauty, is Singapore Zoo’s latest pygmy hippopotamus addition. She was born on 11 April 2015
Ayana, which means blossoming beauty, is Singapore Zoo’s latest pygmy hippopotamus addition. She was born on 11 April 2015 and is the 11th offspring of parents Bubu and Minah. 23 pygmy hippopotamuses have been born in Singapore Zoo in the past 42 years. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

2015 also saw the births of critically endangered cotton-top tamarins, a species of tiny primates, and endangered Southern white rhinoceros and pygmy hippopotamus in Singapore Zoo. The park has an exceptionally impressive track record with all three species, welcoming over 80 cotton-top tamarins, 16 Southern white rhinoceroses and 23 pygmy hippopotamuses in the past 42 years.

WRS RS - River Safari saw two new additions of emperor tamarins – tiny primates with outstanding “facial hair”
River Safari saw two new additions of emperor tamarins – tiny primates with outstanding “facial hair”. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

River Safari welcomed another manatee calf in October, bringing the park’s total herd to 13 individuals. The park also saw the hatchings of unusual amphibians like the fire-bellied newt, a species of small newt native to China, and the births of capybara, super-sized rodents native to South America.

Animal births in Night Safari were particularly exciting as many of the species are from Singapore or Southeast Asia, like Malayan sambar deer, Malayan bearded pig, binturong, hog badger, and the endangered Burmese brow-antlered deer.

Moving beyond the region, Night Safari saw three births of Indian crested porcupines in two years. The park also welcomed two pups to its cackle of spotted hyenas, bringing the park’s total to 11.

WRS NS - Night Safari’s cackle of spotted hyenas added two more to their family in October. Born fully black, the pups slowly develop spots characteristic of the species within months of birth
Night Safari’s cackle of spotted hyenas added two more to their family in October. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.

Jurong Bird Park continues to be actively involved in the breeding of threatened species, with the hatchings of two Bali mynahs and eight Luzon bleeding-heart doves. The park works closely with Avilon Zoo and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in the Philippines and Begawan Foundation in Bali, Indonesia, to increase the off-site numbers of these precious birds. The Bali mynah additions in 2015 are particularly special as it is the first time these chicks are hand-raised. All progenies will eventually be sent back to their respective home countries to be released into the wild.

Also joining the park’s avian collection is the lesser bird-of-paradise, the first successful hatching in over a decade. These birds, prized for their beautiful plumage, are notoriously hard to breed in captivity because of their unique courtship rituals prior to mating.

Dr Cheng added, “Captive breeding programmes play an important role in conserving threatened animal species whose numbers are declining as a result of activities like habitat destruction and poaching.  Some of them can be valuable assurance colonies against extinction in the wild, with the aim of ultimate release back to nature, while all of them are ambassadors representing their relatives in the wild.”

*International Union for Conservation of Nature

WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE HOSTS 23RD SOUTH EAST ASIAN ZOOS ASSOCIATION CONFERENCE

Zoo experts from 18 countries unite to work towards
sustainable captive population of Southeast Asian species

SINGAPORE, 2 November 2015 – Over 200 specialists from the region’s zoos and wildlife institutions have come together this week for the 23rd South East Asian Zoos Association (SEAZA) conference to achieve a common goal of a sustainable captive population of Southeast Asian species. Hosted by Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS), the four-day conference was officiated this morning by Mr S Dhanabalan, Chairman, Mandai Safari Park Holdings Pte Ltd, the holding company of WRS.

Held from 1 to 4 November, the conference calls for a coordinated approach in animal management to ensure desirable outcomes for species requiring conservation attention. It brings together over 200 zoo professionals from 18 countries including Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. Experts will discuss conservation action plans for sustainable populations, breeding strategies, best practices in healthcare, animal welfare and ethics as well as conservation efforts for threatened species.

Dr Phan Viet Lam, President of SEAZA, said: “This conference is another milestone for SEAZA in the conservation and management of sustainable populations in Southeast Asia. Zoos in this region have an important role in this context and we hope to develop strategic action plans for species conservation and visitor education.”

Dr Cheng Wen-Haur, Chief Life Sciences Officer, WRS and Vice President of SEAZA said: “The annual SEAZA conference is a significant event in the calendar for zoos in our region and we are proud to be the host this year. It brings together zoo and aquarium professionals from Southeast Asia and beyond to share best practices and ideas in achieving our common missions of wildlife conservation and education.”

One of the primary objectives of the conference is to identify key Southeast Asian species for conservation and regional studbook development—a first in the region. The studbook tracks the relatedness of animals in zoo collections and allow managers to coordinate and regulate breeding programmes to achieve long-term genetic and demographic sustainability.

In addition, delegates will share findings and experiences, such as acupuncture in birds and avian surrogacy in hatchlings from WRS’ aviculturists. The conference will be complemented by workshops in Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari and Singapore Zoo, where delegates will go behind the scenes for practical hands-on sessions to learn more about the incubation of bird eggs and creating a master plan for conservation education.

In recent years, WRS has organised various conferences and workshops for capacity building and conservation strategy planning, such as the International Congress on Zookeeping and the recent Songbird Crisis Summit.

WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE PRESENTS SG50 TREATS

50% off admission and ticket bundles for Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari,
River Safari and Singapore Zoo in lieu of Singapore’s Jubilee Celebrations

7 May 2015, SINGAPORE – Looking for ways to spend the SG50 Jubilee Weekend? Fresh air, lush greenery and an unforgettable adventure with the animal residents of Wildlife Reserves Singapore’s parks await you – with entry discounts worth trumpeting about!

Wildlife Reserves Singapore invites local residents for a wild time at Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo, with discounts on admission as part of Singapore’s jubilee festivities. Promotions are available between May to September 2015, in addition to the ongoing SG50 promotion for Feather Friends membership at Jurong Bird Park. Visitors can look forward to 50% discount on admission tickets at Singapore Zoo and Jurong Bird Park – two well-loved attractions that many Singaporeans visit during their childhood, parenthood and even golden years. Singaporeans, permanent residents and employment pass holders can also enjoy special ticket bundles for selected parks, as well as SG50-themed free gifts.

SUMMARY OF PROMOTIONS

Jurong Bird Park

SG50 promotion for Feather Friends membership: Enjoy 1 year unlimited entry for the price of a 1 day ticket

1 Dec 2014 – 31 Dec 2015

For the price of a one day admission ticket, local residents can sign up for a special Feather Friends membership and enjoy unlimited year-round entry to Jurong Bird Park. Local residents can enjoy this special membership at S$28 for adults, and S$18 for children (aged 3 – 12 years) and senior citizens (aged 60 years and above). This on-going promotion was launched in Dec 2014 and will end on 31 Dec 2015. Those interested can sign up at the entrance of Jurong Bird Park, or online at http://members.wrs.com.sg/ to skip queues.

50% off admission to Jurong Bird Park

1 – 31 Aug 2015

Singaporeans, permanent residents and employment pass holders enjoy 50% discount on admission by flashing coupons and proof of identity at Jurong Bird Park ticket counters.

Jurong Bird Park and Singapore Zoo

Free admission for senior citizens

30 May – 30 Jun 2015

Singaporeans, permanent residents and employment pass holders aged 60 years and above enjoy free admission to Jurong Bird Park and Singapore Zoo. Proof of identity required.

Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo

Free SG50 animal-themed tote bag

7 – 10 Aug 2015

Visitors to the four wildlife parks can get their hands on a free SG50 animal-themed woven tote bag (worth $3) at the parks’ retail stores. Limited to 1 bag per visitor, while stocks last.

River Safari

50% off River Safari admission with purchases of Singapore Zoo and/or Night Safari tickets

1 April – 31 July 2015

Each ticket to Night Safari or Singapore Zoo allows visitors to enjoy 50% discount on admission tickets to River Safari for visits on the same day. Admission to River Safari excludes boat rides.

$5 child admission with every adult ticket to River Safari

1 May – 30 June 2015

NTUC card holders enjoy special rates where kids (3 to 12 years) enter at only $5 (U.P $18) with every adult admission ticket to River Safari.

River Safari and Singapore Zoo

50% off bundled admission to River Safari and Singapore Zoo

1 – 31 Aug 2015

Singaporeans, permanent residents and employment pass holders enjoy 50% discount on bundled admission. Proof of identity required. Valid for same-day visits only.

Night Safari

50% off admission to Night Safari

1 – 30 Sept 2015 (Sun to Thurs only)

Singaporeans, permanent residents and employment pass holders enjoy 50% discount on admission. Proof of identity required.

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

‘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.

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

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

RHINOS IN TROUBLE: LEARN THE HORNEST TRUTH AT SINGAPORE ZOO’S RHINO CONSERVATION AWARENESS CAMPAIGN

Singapore Zoo aims to raise awareness on the plight of rhinoceroses in the wild;
Campaign kick-starts with expert forum including speakers from TRAFFIC and WCS

Wildlife Reserves Singapore’s rhinoceros keepers join guests in clipping their fingernails to symbolise their commitment to rhino conservation ahead of the month-long Rhinos in Trouble awareness campaign at Singapore Zoo, which starts on 20 September 2014. Rhinos’ horns are made of keratin, the same material found in human hair and nails. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.
Wildlife Reserves Singapore’s rhinoceros keepers join guests in clipping their fingernails to symbolise their commitment to rhino conservation ahead of the month-long Rhinos in Trouble awareness campaign at Singapore Zoo, which starts on 20 September 2014. Rhinos’ horns are made of keratin, the same material found in human hair and nails. (PHOTO: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.)

Singapore, 19 Sept 2014Singapore Zoo will launch a rhinoceros conservation awareness campaign, titled Rhinos in Trouble: The Hornest Truth, from 20 September to 20 October 2014 to raise awareness about the plight of rhinoceroses in the wild, and is working closely with TRAFFIC Southeast Asia and Wildlife Conservation Society (Vietnam) to stamp out illegal trade of rhino horns.

The month-long campaign is held in conjunction with World Rhino Day, which falls on 22 September. Visitors to Singapore Zoo are encouraged to donate their nail clippings to symbolise their commitment to rhino conservation.

International trade of rhinoceros horn has been illegal since the 80s, yet the market is still thriving today even though science has proven that rhino horn is only as useful as a medicine as human hair and nails are. Rhino horns are made of keratin, the same material found in human hair and nails.

Recent studies by TRAFFIC and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) have revealed that current consumption of products made from rhino horn has gone beyond perceived medicinal purposes. Rhino horn has become a luxury item and a status symbol. With the recent increase in wealthy individuals in Southeast Asia, rhino horn is also being used as a “hangover cure” after excessive alcohol consumption by the affluent.

The year 2013 set a record for rhino poaching in South Africa – home to around 75 per cent of the world’s total rhino population, with 1,004 killed. As of 10 September 2014, poachers had already butchered 769 rhinos in the country. If the current trend continues for the rest of 2014, the number of rhinos killed is likely to exceed record set in 2013 by another 100.

Even in Singapore, where the trade of endangered species and animal parts is strictly regulated, there had been cases where its ports were used as transit points. On 10 January 2014, eight pieces of rhinoceros horns weighing a total of about 21.5kg were confiscated at Changi Airport by the Singapore authorities.

With Rhinos in Trouble: The Hornest Truth, Singapore Zoo hopes to raise public awareness and engage Singaporeans to help in the efforts to save the rhinoceros in the wild.

Ms Claire Chiang, Chairman, Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said, “We urge the public to refuse any rhino horn or rhino horn products should they be offered any, and to please inform all their friends and relatives to do the same. If we don’t buy the product, demand will fall, and rhinoceroses will not suffer needless deaths. Together, we have to, and we can, ensure there is a future for these magnificent creatures.”

In a statement, Mr David Seow, Secretary General of the Singapore Chinese Druggists Association, appeals to Singaporeans to comply with the Government’s ban on the sale of any rhinoceros products and wishes to convey that there are many alternative medicinal material and products that can replace rhinoceros horns. Members of Singapore Chinese Druggists Association also fully support international conservation agreements and efforts to save the rhinoceros from extinction.

Pre-school guests at Singapore Zoo eager to show their support for rhinos lined up to drop their nail clippings into the Jar of Nails. The children, from Odyssey, the Global Pre-school, enjoyed a preview of the Rhinos in Trouble conservation awareness campaign which starts on 20 September 2014. PHOTO CREDITS: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.
Pre-school guests at Singapore Zoo eager to show their support for rhinos lined up to drop their nail clippings into the Jar of Nails. The children, from Odyssey, the Global Pre-school, enjoyed a preview of the Rhinos in Trouble conservation awareness campaign which starts on 20 September 2014. (PHOTO: WILDLIFE RESERVES SINGAPORE.)

Rhinos in Trouble: The Hornest Truth kick-starts with a public seminar on 20 Sept from 1pm – 5.30pm, and topics include:
– “Rhino Revolution from Africa to Asia” talk by Ms Jennifer Fox, Co-founder and partner, Thornybush Private Game Reserve, South Africa
– “Rhino Horn Trade in Vietnam” talk by Ms Duong Viet Hong, Communications Manager, Wildlife Conservation Society, Vietnam programme
– “Changing minds to save Rhinos: Demand reduction through behaviour change in Vietnam” talk by Dr Naomi Doak, Coordinator, TRAFFIC Southeast Asia, Greater Mekong Programme
The seminar also features a photography exhibition of the critically endangered Sumatran rhino, taken by wildlife photographer Mr Stephen Belcher. Proceeds from the sale of photographs will go towards wildlife conservation efforts.

LIST OF ACTIVITIES FOR RHINOS IN TROUBLE: THE HORNEST TRUTH

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For more information, visit http://www.zoo.com.sg/events-promos/rhino-month-14.html 
To make your stand against the rhino horn trade, go to www.zoo.com.sg/thehornesttruth