Sometimes, we humans get it right.
Such is what happened in Asia’s Lion City, when the dedicated team behind Wildlife Reserves Singapore had a number of successful wild births in 2017. Wildlife Reserves Singapore or WRS is in charge of managing the country’s zoological institutions such as the Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari, and Singapore Zoo. And this achievement is a cause for celebration.
After all, following the decades of abuse wildlife all over the world is suffering from both climate change and the hands of irresponsible men, many wild animals have dwindled in number and are going endangered—or worse, extinct.
Thus is the efforts of Wildlife Reserves Singapore—the self-funded institution is geared towards protecting biodiversity in Singapore and Southeast Asia. And in 2017, their efforts bore some beautiful fruits.
Here are seven wild borns Wildlife Reserves Singapore welcomed in the last year:
7. Baby Khansa, a Bornean Orangutan
A Bornean Orangutan baby, Khansa, was born in April 2017 to mother Anita at Singpore Zoo. She is Anita’s 6th offspring. Khansa is Singapore Zoo’s 46th successful orangutan birth—a cause for celebration, as Bornean orangutans were proclaimed critically endangered, from endangered, in 2016 just a couple of months before Khansa was born.
6. Two Baby Electric Blue Geckos
Due to their popularity in the illegal pet trade, electric blue geckos are one of the most threatened geckos in the world. But three days before Christmas in 2017, Singapore Zoo got an early gift from Santa—two critically endangered electric blue geckos hatched. Currently, the team is trying to build a stable population of the species under human, but with the ultimate aim to release them back into the wild.
5. Abina, a Pygmy Hippo
The end of the year proved to be a truly festive time aside from the holidays. On November 7, 2017, an endangered baby female pygmy hippo was born. She was named Abina, meaning “born on Tuesday” in Ghanian. Abina is Singapore Zoo’s 24th successful pygmy hippo birth.
4. A Jaguar Cub (still unnamed)
Way over at River Safari, on the other hand, November saw the birth of a adorably furry and spotty jaguar cub to first-time mother Aswa. This is the first successful jaguar birth at the park since 2009. The cub is not yet ready for a public appearance, though. She remains in a nursery den with her mother under human carers for a few more months.
3. Squish, a Greater Flamingo
Squish made headlines as him and his striking blue shoes went viral August of 2017. These blue shoes were made to protect Squish’s foot pads as the baby flamingo learned to walk, but surely he didn’t mind the fame that went with it, too. Squish truly is a star in his own right.
2. Oban, a White Rhino
Meaning “king” in the African Yoruba language, Oban the baby white rhino, galloped into the hearts of people in October 2017 when he was first debuted to the public. Although the park has had 21 successful white rhino babies, Oban is the park’s first male white rhino in five years.
1. Maru, a King Penguin
The park’s first successful king penguin hatchling in a decade, Maru, a king penguin chick, was born on October 10 at Jurong Bird Park. Maru means “round” in Japanese. Maru was raised at Jurong Bird Park’s Breeding and Research Centre to ensure its survival. He made his first appearance to the public in December 2017.
Over a quarter of the reported 540 animal births and hatchings in 2017 in Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo are endangered species, thanks to the continued breeding efforts of Wildlife Reserves Singapore.
Dr. Cheng Wen-Haur, Deputy CEO and Chief Life Sciences Officer of WRS, says so herself, “The provision of quality care by our team of dedicated and passionate animal carers is a key success factor and we have yet another year of significant breeding achievements in our parks. Together with our efforts in protecting wildlife in their native habitats, breeding of threatened species in our parks contributes to their continuing survival in the world.”
Faith in humanity, restored! Which of these new baby wild animals do you want to see in person? Share your thoughts in the comments!