Vol 10 No 6
Surprise visit by a Very Important
Wetland Project II
Art in the Wetlands
A 'Sungei' Runs Through It
HSBC/NYAA Youth Environmental
Bird Flu: Frequently Asked
Hey, what were you thinking of? Singapore River? Or the
movie from Hollywood?
I am referring to the river that connects the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve
Visitor Centre to the Reserve, which is Sungei Buloh Besar.
I chose this title simply because I have come across feedback from local
visitors lamenting that there is nothing to see here at the Reserve.
Some have even asked if there are playgrounds here! Whatever the question may
be, my point of view and answer is simple.
If you are a nature lover and have the passion and time to explore the
Reserve, please do so.
By all means, come in the early morning and take a stroll here to enjoy and
appreciate Mother Nature. You do not have to go too far. Just get comfortably
seated at the main bridge and enjoy the tranquility that awaits you!
I love having lunch breaks at the main bridge. Ten minutes or thirty minutes,
high tide or low tide, there is always something happening along this river.
During low tide, if chance may have it, I would be lucky enough to spot the
crocodile, whom I have affectionately come to know as Bob the
Croc. It will be basking itself along the mudflats under the mid-day
strong sun. There will be times when you may even find it submerged in the
water near the sluice gate just next to the main hide.
Other common sights that await you would be our two-legged feathered friends
such as a family of white-breasted water hens having a drink by the water
edge. Camouflaged well amongst their habitat, a striated heron would be
perching on the tree branch trying to catch its next meal. A dozen egrets,
milky stocks and sometimes one or two grey herons would be waiting patiently
for a good catch along the mudflats. Recently, a solitude pelican has made an
unannounced appearance, much to the delight of our staff who had the
opportunity to see it.
One might be able to catch different schools of fish playing around and
swimming past the bridge. If you looked down the bridge, you certainly would
not miss the archerfish, half-beaks , milk fish and green chromides, to name
a few. If luck is on your side, our resident otters may swim by with their
curious gazes. Sometimes, you may even see a Malayan Water Monitor propelling
itself across the river.
During the migratory season, just about when the tide is
rising, you just may be able to see large groups of migratory birds flying in
to feed! Some visitors have had the privilege of this wonderful sight! The
migratory birds which are commonly seen would include the Whimbrels, Pacific
Golden plovers, Common Sandpipers, Red Shanks and Green Shanks. From time to
time, one may chance upon the resident stock-billed kingfisher perching on
the tree branch, patiently waiting for the next unsuspecting fish. With the
cool northeast monsoon winds blowing, sitting at the bridge can certainly
make one feel relaxed and even sleepy sometimes!
So, I will state my case again - there is plenty to see at Sungei Buloh
Wetland Reserve! Sit at the bridge along the river and open your
ears. You will perhaps hear the resident birds calls or the cicada
hissing for its mate in the distance. Amazingly, you may also chance upon a
solitude plantain squirrel attempting to cross the bridge! So, enjoy this
peaceful scene of this last frontier of Singapore