Treats in store as Singapore Zoo turns 40

SAY CHEESE: Former president S R Nathan with the Singapore Zoo's orang utans at the zoo's 40th-birthday celebration yesterday. There were performances and photo opportunities for guests.


    Jun 28, 2013

    Treats in store as Singapore Zoo turns 40

    EXPECT the Singapore Zoo to deliver a more interactive experience to better engage younger visitors.

    That was one of the plans shared yesterday by Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS) at an event to celebrate the zoo's 40th birthday.

    Ms Claire Chiang, the chairman of WRS, which runs the zoo, said that the zoo of the future in Singapore and in other parts of the world would be one that is interactive.

    She explained that the younger generation would have grown up with gadgets and prefer immediate access to information.

    "(The zoo) has to be immersive, so you feel like you are going through a journey in the rainforest instead of being a passive observer," she said, adding that using social media could be one way to make the zoo experience more interactive.

    The zoo is also going beyond children and reaching out to other demographics, such as youth and adults, to spread the animal-conservation message.

    At the zoo's birthday celebration yesterday, there were performances and photo opportunities for guests with some of the animals, such as elephants and orang utans.

    Among the guests yesterday was former president S R Nathan.

    The Singapore Zoo opened its doors as an open-concept zoo in 1973. It is home to more than 2,800 specimens representing over 300 species, of which 26 per cent are endangered.

    Besides the zoo, WRS also runs Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari and the River Safari.

    Fans of the zoo are in for a treat: For the whole of next month, all Singaporeans and permanent residents can enjoy 40 per cent off the entry price.

    Ms Chiang said of the zoo's birthday: "Turning 40 is a monumental event and this is a time for us to reflect on all that we have accomplished with the Singapore Zoo, and what it means to our families, friends and international visitors."