Singapore Government Logo

A Singapore Government Agency Website


Flora & Fauna Web

Browse the database for plants and animals found in Singapore online

Total no. of Flora Species & Cultivars
Total no. of Fauna Species
Cerbera manghas

Plant ofthe Month

Cerbera manghas L.

Cerbera manghas, also known as the Sea Mango, is an evergreen tree that can grow up to 20 m in height. Its pure white flowers are accentuated with a pinkish-red centre and have a mild fragrance. This species is native to Singapore and can be found in the coastal forests of Pulau Semakau and St John’s Island

Sunda Slow Loris

Animal ofthe Month

Nycticebus coucang (Boddaert, 1785)

The critically endangered Sunda Slow Loris is the only venomous primate in Singapore. It produces a yellow secretion from glands on the insides of its elbow, which combines with saliva to form venom. During the day, it sleeps on branches or in tree holes by tucking its head into its belly and rolling into a ball. Globally, the population size of Sunda Slow Loris is decreasing due to habitat loss and illegal pet trade.)

Did youknow?

Learn More
Nephelium lappaceum

The Hairy Red Fruit

You may be familiar with the Rambutan fruit, but did you know the Rambutan tree (Nephelium lappaceum) is native to Singapore? Found in the rainforests of Malesia, this tree can grow to heights of 25 m. The common name, Rambutan, is derived from the Malay word for hair (rambut), and it refers to the red hairy fruit wall that encapsulates the sweet white pulp surrounding a seed. Rambutan pulp is rich in vitamin C and often consumed as a snack or dessert.

The Hairy Red Fruit
Syzygium polyanthum

Our Native Spice Tree

Did you know the Syzygium polyanthum or Indonesian Bay-leaf is a spice tree native to Singapore? Found in tropical forests, this tree can grow to heights of over 30 m. Its aromatic young leaves are cooked fresh or dried in meat and vegetable curries and stews, and is commonly sold in Indonesian markets and by street vendors. The sour tasting fruit are edible when ripe. Besides its edible uses, a dye can be extracted from the bark and its timber is suitable for making furniture.

Our Native Spice Tree
Artemisia vulgaris

Multi-tasking Mugwort

Did you know Artemisia vulgaris, or the Common Mugwort, is a herb with a multitude of ethnobotanical uses? The leaves are aromatic yet bitter tasting and can be consumed fresh or cooked. In Japan and Korea, the leaves are cooked with fish and meat to mask strong odours and used as a colouring agent in rice dumplings. In traditional Asian medicine, the stems, leaves and flowers are prepared and used as sedatives or appetite stimulants.

Multi-tasking Mugwort
Citrus medica

Finger-licking Citrus peels

Besides its unusual appearance, did you know the fruit of Citrus medica or Fingered Citron makes excellent zest? The Fingered Citron has extremely thick peels that makes up most of the fruit. Its rind is rough and has a bumpy texture, but is fragrant and lacks the bitterness commonly found in lemon and orange peels. This citrus fruit is a great alternative in recipes calling for lemon or orange zest. The zest can also be diced and cooked in sugar water to make candied fruit, perfect for snacking!

Finger-licking Citrus peels
Ocimum basilicum

Fragrant, sweet and everything nice

Did you know that besides the leaves, the seeds of the Basil or Ocimum basilicum are also edible! Basil seeds contain little carbohydrates but are rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids. When soaked in water, the seeds exude a gelatinous mass on the outside yet remain crunchy. Basil seeds can be added to beverages, desserts and confectioneries to add texture to refreshments.

Fragrant, sweet and everything nice
Flacourtia inermis

Jams, syrups, and pies

Did you know that the fruit of Flacourtia inermis or Rukam masam can be made into great jams? The tree produces plenty of round berries that turn deep scarlet when ripe. These are usually not eaten raw because of its sharp, sour taste. However, when processed with sugar, they are transformed into delicious jams, chutneys, syrups, and even pies! You can spot this species along streets, parks or gardens adorned with young red leaves and sometimes laden with red fruit.

Jams, syrups, and pies

Sunda Slow Loris

Video of wild Sunda Slow Loris in Singapore, captured on Night Vision Equipment.

Flora & Fauna News

View All

Renewed hope for Singapore’s Margaritaria!

Since the rediscovery of Margaritaria indica in 2012, researchers in Singapore have found another two mature trees on Kusu Island and Bukit Brown. Pollination is the bottleneck of reproduction for this dioecious species where male and female flowers are produced on different trees. The discovery of viable seeds from the tree in Bukit Brown is an indication that both male and female individuals are around. There is renewed hope for species recovery efforts to safeguard the future of this species in Singapore. With this latest discovery, propagation trials for this critically endangered species are currently under way.

05 Jul, 2021

The Beginnings of Plant Life on Land

Researchers in France found that 450 million years ago, plants moved from the aquatic to terrestrial environment with the help of fungi. The team demonstrated that the non-vascular bryophyte (Marchantia paleacea) possessed genes that facilitated the sharing of resources like lipids with fungi, very much like the symbiotic relationships present day vascular plants have with fungi. This suggests that the common ancestor of vascular and non-vascular plants also had similar genes that allowed the transfer of resources which eventually led to the successful colonisation of land.

31 May, 2021

Coffee boosts forestation

Scientists from ETH-Zurich and the University of Hawaii found that coffee pulp sped up restoration of exploited land in tropical regions. A post-agricultural plot in Costa Rica covered with 50 cm-thick layer of coffee pulp, the leftover of coffee production that are typically discarded, was transformed into a small forest with pioneer tree species after two years. The coffee-boosted plot had 60% more canopy cover by trees that are 4 times taller than those in the non-treated control plot. The coffee pulp treated topsoil was rich in Carbon and Nitrogen, and the amount of Sulphur, Phosphorus, Iron and Manganese were much higher than the control plot.

30 Apr, 2021