Audio Version Available

It’s seldom good news when we read about human-wildlife interactions.

In recent years, there have been more reports of wild boar attacks, snake sightings and more, prompting some Singaporeans to call for these wild animals to be euthanised.

Yet how can we blame these animals when their habitats and living spaces are slowly but surely being encroached upon by Singapore’s growing urbanisation? We share some responsibility in learning how to treat our natural environment with respect.

So how can we react appropriately when we meet wild animals?

We can start by learning more about them and the habitats that they live in Singapore.

World Wildlife Day (WWD), which falls on March 3, is recognised by United Nations in celebration of the world’s wild flora and fauna and their contribution they make to the planet.

This year’s WWD marks the 50th anniversary of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna (CITES). and 2023’s theme is “Partnerships for Wildlife Conservation”.

While conservation work may seem like a scary commitment, organisations and local nature groups have made learning about wildlife easier.

Here are some events leading up to World Wildlife Day that you can join to appreciate the biodiversity in Singapore!

Go on a free NParks guided tour

world wildlife day
(Left) Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Singapore Botanic Gardens, Jurong Lake Gardens. Image source: NParks

In the weekends leading up to World Wildlife Day, NParks is offering a series of free guided tours around Singapore:

  • Sungei Buloh

Get to know the flora and fauna living in and around the water edges of Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve!

There are two walks available, with registration opening the Friday a week before the event. These walks will be cancelled in the event of wet weather.

Dates: Feb 18 & Feb 25

Time: 9.30am to 11am

Venue: Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve Visitor Centre

For more information on both walks, click here (Feb 18) and here (Feb 25).

  • Jurong Lake Gardens

If you prefer to take a stroll along a lake, take your family and friends for a guided walk at Jurong Lake Gardens. Get a change in scenery and breathe in some fresh air while learning about the rich biodiversity in the western part of Singapore!

Dress in comfortable clothes and footwear, pack a water bottle and hat. Don’t forget your camera!

Date: Feb 25

Time: 8am to 9am (Session 1), 8.15am to 9.15am (Session 2)

Venue: Jurong Lake Gardens

To sign up and for more information, click here (Session 1) and here (Session 2).

  • Singapore Botanic Gardens

Explore habitats ranging from a freshwater forest wetland to a lowland rainforest all at the Singapore Botanic Gardens! Learn about the wetland ecosystems at Keppel Discovery Wetlands and walk among some of the tallest trees in Southeast Asia.

Register at Visitor Services, Tyersall Gate 15 minutes before the session. Pets are not allowed on this tour.

Date: Feb 25

Time: 9am to 10am

Venue: Singapore Botanic Gardens

For more information, click here.

Attend a Youth Symposium

Organised and led by youths from NParks’ Youth Stewards for Nature programme, the WWD Regional Youth Symposium is back for its first in-person event.

Last year, the symposium was a virtual event, but this year’s activities will be spread over a two-day programme on Mar 4 and 5. Registration ends on Feb 12.

The theme for this year’s symposium is “Partnerships for Wildlife Conservation in Southeast Asia”.

On Mar 4, the topics are Living with Nature and Learning for Nature.

On Mar 5, the focus will be on Saving Nature and comprises of workshops that present the opportunity for participants to sign up for conservation work. Topics include combating online illegal trade in wildlife, an outdoor walk with Singaporean award-winning videographer Jayaprakash Joghee Bojan as well as discussions on wildlife forensics, sapling protection action, tree planting and invasive species removal.

View the programme details here and sign up here if you’re interested!

The symposium is free to attend. Sign-ups close on Feb 12.

Dates & Time:

Mar 4, 8am to 5pm

Mar 5, early to 12pm

For more information, visit its Instagram account @wwd.symposium or email [email protected].

Have a Wild Conversation


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Wild Space (@_wildspace)

So how do we learn to live alongside our wild neighbours?

Wild Space, a start-up providing individuals with experiences to spark conversations about biodiversity and the environment, hosts monthly nature-themed events titled Wild Conversations, and the topic for March is on living in harmony with the wildlife in Singapore.

At the event, Daphne Ong, founder of Wild Space, and guest speaker, Anbarasi Boopal, co-CEO of ACRES, will share about the plights of Singapore’s wildlife and how we should practise the 3Cs – Coexistence, Compassion and Conservation –  to help improve the situation!

This event is pay-as-you-wish, and you can choose to contribute to Wild Space or ACRES.

Sign up here. Feel free to leave questions for the speakers as well!

Date: Mar 2

Time: 6.30pm to 8.30pm

Venue: 2am: dessertbar, 21A Lor Liput (Holland Village)

For more information, check out its Instagram @_wildspace or its website!

Tune in to a United Nations virtual event

Of course, you can always join in on the United Nations official World Wildlife Day virtual event organised by CITES Secretariat and the US Fish and Wildlife Service on Mar 3!

Tune in to the US Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLC) and youth representatives sharing successful case studies related to partnerships on international, national and local levels. The event aims to raise awareness on the role of business and finance as well as focus on marine life and oceans in conservation efforts.

Register here.

Note that as it is an international event, it is a late-night event for us here in Singapore.

Date: Mar 3

Time: 11pm to 1.30am Singapore time (10am to 12.30pm Eastern Standard Time)

Venue: Online

For more information, follow WWD on its Instagram @worldwildlifeday, Facebook and Twitter @wildlifeday or check out its website.

Enjoy a Wild weekend!

world wildlife day singapore
(Left) Botanic Gardens Singapore, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Rifle Range Nature Park. Image source: NParks (1&3), Toh Wei Yang (@tohthetoaster on Instagram)

On the weekend after World Wildlife Day, there is a host of free outdoor activities for everyone.

  • For the Artsy: Nature Sketching in the Gardens

Slow down for a journey to appreciate nature and join volunteer artist Tham Pui San at Botanic Gardens for a two-hour session on nature sketching.

Bring along your own sketching materials (we suggest at least a drawing block, 2B & 4B pencils, stool or picnic mat).

Register at the service desk at the Tanglin Gate Botany Centre at least 15 minutes before the event.

Date: Mar 4

Time: 8.30am to 10.30am

Venue: Singapore Botanic Gardens

For more information, click here.

  • For the Curious: Wader Watch

Tired of only seeing mynahs and pigeons in your neighbourhood?

Head to Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve for one of its signature workshops to catch a glimpse of migratory shorebirds. These birds have travelled almost ten thousand kilometres from places like the Siberian and Tibetian plateaus!

Learn how to identify these migratory birds during the workshop and hone your newly acquired skills through a birdwatching session around the nature reserve.

Open to children aged 10 and above, families are welcome to join in on the fun. Bring your own binoculars but if you don’t have any, some would be provided.

Registration opens on Feb 17, 8am

Date: Mar 4

Time: 9am to 11am

Venue: Theatrette, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Wetland Centre

For more information, click here.

  • For the Adventurous: Rifle Range Nature Walk

How about going off the beaten track to explore Singapore’s nature spaces?

Cicada Tree Eco-Place, non-profit organisation advocating for protection of our biodiversity and championing eco-living education for youths, is hosting a nature walk in celebration of World Wildlife Day.

Embark on winding pathways though hills, forest, stream and marshland which provide crucial homes for wildlife. Do note that you will be scaling a gentle hill to a look-out point.

To register, please email the name(s) of the participant(s) to [email protected].

More details and instructions will be provided upon registration.

The event is pay-as-you-wish and all donations will go to ACRES.

Date: Mar 4

Time: 9am to 11.30am

Venue: Rifle Range Nature Park, Rifle Range Road

For more information, visit Cicada Tree Eco-Place on their Instagram @cicadatreeecoplace , Facebook or website.

Keep Wilding!

Keep Wilding!
Spot the wild pit viper at Sungei Buloh! Image source: Toh Wei Yang (@tohthetoaster on Instagram)

World Wildlife Day is not the only time we can connect with nature and learn about the biodiversity in Singapore. You can take part in nature walks, beach clean ups and join conversations about the environment and wildlife anytime during the year!

In May, NParks is also organising its annual Festival of Biodiversity, so keep a look out for more information on its Instagram @nparksbuzz, Facebook and website!

Other stories you might like

array(2) { [0]=> int(11208) [1]=> int(16142) }

In the meantime, keep yourself informed on the dos and don’ts when you encounter wildlife in our own backyard. NParks has a guidebook and webinar series to find out more.

For any wildlife sightings, destressed or injured wildlife, you can call the 24-hour ACRES Wildlife Rescue Hotline at 9783 7782 or NParks’ 24-hour Animal Response Centre at 1800-476-1600.

For more guidelines on wildlife encounters and rescues, visit ACRES’ website here.

Follow us on Telegram

Follow us on Telegram

If you like what you read, follow us on Twitter and Google News to get the latest updates.