Apart from protecting biodiversity in our backyard, Wildlife Reserves Singapore regularly conducts conservation outreach events at our parks and through various venues across the island . These outreach events aim to educate about wildlife in general and create public awareness on native wildlife and conservation projects that Wildlife Reserves Singapore is undertaking. Showcased below are a few such outreach events.
Rhinos in Trouble - The Hornest Truth
The Singapore Zoo held a month long Rhino conservation campaign from 20 September to 19 October 2014 to raise awareness about the plight of Rhinoceroses in the wild, and to stamp out illegal trade of Rhino horns.WRS also worked with the Singapore Chinese Druggists Association (SCDA) during this campaign. SCDA made statement supporting Rhino conservation on their website. SDCA 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.
A photography exhibition cum sale and public seminar was held on 20th September. Jennifer Fox from Thrornybush Game Lodge, Dr. Naomi Doak from TRAFFIC Southeast Asia and Duong Viet Hong from WCS Vietnam spoke about Rhino conservation at the public seminar. Stephen Belcher, wildlife photographer also shared his experiences in photographing the rarest Rhino, the critically endangered and elusive Javan Rhino in the wild.
The month-long campaign commemorates World Rhino Day, which falls on 22 September, and is celebrated in various ways all over the world. Visitors to Singapore Zoo were also encouraged to donate their nail clippings to symbolise their commitment to Rhino conservation.
Istana Open House
Wildlife Reserves Singapore sets up a booth at the Istana during the five public holidays opened to the public each year to educate the public on native wildlife. In 2013, WRS focused its Istana out-reach programs around the Year of the Snake. Information about different species of snakes was shared with the public. A free phone-app for Singapore snake identification was developed with the support of WRSCF.
In 2014 as well WRS participated in the Istana Open house raising awareness on the various threats to wildlife due to human demand for animals and animal products.
Visit our booth at the Istana on the upcoming public holidays in 2015 and find out more!
Top: President Tony Tan observing the Singapore freshwater crabs.
Bottom: Visitors to the conservation booth.
ITE Eco Conference
Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) participated in the ITE Eco Conference 2014 on 16th October 2014. The event was organised by ITE's Environmental Sustainability Initiatives Project Committee & WWF Eco Campus Programme Student Committee. The theme for the conference was Protecting Our Biodiversity, Preserving Our Heritage. WRS put up an exhibition booth themed “Illegal wildlife trade and its impact on Biodiversity”. This highlighted the various ongoing threats due to wildlife crime occurring even in Singapore. This booth was visited by approximately 1000 students and 200 staff and guests. In addition, Dr. Sonja from WRS also spoke at conference on “From Crabs to Elephants: Conservation Dimensions from a Veterinarian’s perspective”to an audience of 450 students and 200 staff and guests.
WRS also set up a booth at ITE College West Repertory for the ITE Eco-Conference 2011, “RE-THINKing Green Practices and Green Technologies to Reap Rewards”, on 8 Jul 2011. The inaugural conference served as a platform for ITE staff and students to discover and learn the best green practices from other organizations and how ITE as an education institution can create a holistic Commitment to Action to address the challenge of reducing carbon footprints. The booth showcased innovations that WRS has undertaken to reduce, reuse and recycle waste. For example, reusing wood from fallen trees in exhibits, using elephant dung as fertilizer, and reusing waste as enrichment tools. A similar booth was also set up at the ITE Eco Carnival held at ITE College East on 7 Oct 2011.
Visitors learning about illegal wildlife trade at our booth
International Coastal Cleanup Singapore
Over many years Wildlife Reserves Singapore has participated in the International Coastal Cleanup in Singapore. In 2014 the event was held on 13th September. The 24 staff and volunteers from Wildlife Reserves Singapore, who attended the cleanup, picked a total of 183 kg of trash at the Pandan Mangrove site. Plastic bags and food wrappers were the most common rubbish collected.
Left: Recording the collections whilst cleaning up
Right: ICCS 2014 team with the fruits of our labour
Festival of Biodiversity
Wildlife Reserves Singapore participated at the third Festival of Biodiversity 2014. This festival aimed to bring together all sectors of the community, to celebrate and learn more about our natural heritage, our efforts in conserving and enhancing our biodiversity, and the ways in which the public can contribute. WRSCF displayed a panel showcasing the local research work supported over the 5 years of its existence. Awareness regarding reptiles was spread using snake and monitor lizard specimens as well as the phone app on the Snakes of Singapore which has been funded by the WRSCF. Two specimens of freshwater crabs were displayed at the booth and information on the conservation needs to the Singapore Freshwater Crab was shared with the public.
During the past Festival of Biodiversity in 2012 and 2013 as well, WRS showcased all WRSCF funded projects and educated the public on native wildlife.
Top: Visitors learning about Reptiles of Singapore at our booth
Bottom: Group picture at the booth in Festival of Biodiversity 2014
Frog Event – “Leap Here!”
In conjunction with the leap year, the Singapore Zoo hosted a frog themed event titled “Leap Here!” for kids aged 12 and below on 25 and 26 Feb 2012. The event aimed to create awareness and educate children on the native frogs of Singapore and their conservation through five game stations offering interactive games and activities on frogs. The event ran successfully with a total of 728 participants over the two days. It also provided a good opportunity for the 45 volunteers who helped out in the event to learn more about our local frogs.
Kids learning about frogs through interactive games