Natural food sources and feeding
Singapore’s natural green spaces are home to a healthy, biodiverse ecosystem of flora and fauna. The variety of native plants in our green spaces are a sustainable food source for our wildlife.
As wild animals have instinctive hunting and foraging skills, there is no need for humans to feed them. The people who feed wild animals tend to do so out of kindness, as they are unaware of the detrimental effects of their actions. Feeding wildlife can lead to undesirable consequences, such as:
1. Unsustainable wildlife population growth
Wildlife population size increases as animals breed in response to abundance of food. However, this population growth is unsustainable because the habitat area remains the same. Consequently, the increased competition within and among the different animal species may force some animals to venture out of their natural habitat and into human-occupied areas, where they would not survive.
|2. A change in wild animals’ natural behaviour
For example, wild boars are shy animals that inhabit dense forests. Feeding of wild boars may encourage them to venture out of their natural habitats, putting them in close proximity to humans.
Other examples of unnatural behaviours induced by feeding include:
- Animals exhibiting increased aggressiveness towards humans in order to obtain food, as the animals associate humans with sources of food.
- Changing animal activity levels. Animals may become more active during hours when feeding occurs.
- Animals moving to new habitats, including urban areas, which may hinder human activity and endanger the animals.
3. Harming the health of local wildlife
The food given to wild animals often do not meet their nutritional requirements. Some foods may even make animals sick, or susceptible to diseases.
Poaching wild animals
Poaching wild animals involves extracting them from their natural environments and, in some cases, killing them, with the intent to sell. Such wildlife trading acts are illegal.
Some animals may even be poached to be kept as pets. Poaching wild animals causes unnecessary harm to animals, and keeping wild animals in captivity or in an unfamiliar environment further induces stress on them.
Poaching also disrupts the natural balance of the ecosystem. Removing animals from their natural habitats could bring substantial disruption to the natural food chain and the overall ecosystem.
Under the Wildlife Act, it is illegal to poach wildlife in Singapore. It is an offence to kill, trap, or take any wildlife without approval from Director-General/ Wildlife Management, other than those that are exempted from those activities, such as mynas, pigeons, crows, and invertebrates that are not prescribed as protected wildlife species. Any person found doing so will be liable on conviction to a maximum fine of S$50,000, and the wildlife will be seized.
If you see any suspected poaching activities, please relay the following information via www.avs.gov.sg/feedback or call the Animal Response Centre at 1800-4761600.
- Type(s) of animals poached.
- Location of the activity.
- Frequency of poaching.
- Description of vehicles used for the activity (e.g. model, colour, licence plate number, etc.).
- Other useful information (e.g. photographs, equipment used for poaching, description of poachers, etc.).
- Your contact details.
All information provided to NParks will be kept strictly confidential.