https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/logo4.jpgWETlands
a publication of Sungei Buloh Nature Park


 

Vol 5 No 1
Apr 98


Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh


Workshops
for Children &
for Teachers


5th Anniversary Celebrations: events and messages

BabeWatch R(A): Herons at
Sungei Buloh

Time and Tide Wait for No Man: what you can see at the various
tide levels

Bird Sightings
(Dec 98-Jan 99)

 

Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh Nature Park

Lim Haw Chuan and
Colleen Goh


https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/729g.jpgMany prawn farms formerly occupied the area around Sungei Buloh. Not surprisingly therefore, the history of Sungei Buloh is closely linked to the prawn farming industry.

The waterlogged and muddy mangrove swamps that occupy much of the Park are rich in organic nutrients. These nutrients make excellent food for the prawn fry. Consequently, prawns would naturally spawn in the mangrove swamp. Making use of this knowledge, traditional prawn farmers devised an ingenious and low-cost way to trap and harvest these prawns.

This entailed digging a shallow pond of about 1-2 hectares from the mangrove soil. Embankments are build around the pond and a sluice gate is constructed to allow for water exchange. The brackish ponds you see around the Park are the remnants of smaller prawn ponds that have been joined together by the breaking of the embankments between them.

With traditional prawn farming, the farmer starts by opening the sluice gate to allow the wild prawn larvae to swim into the pond. The prawn larvae are trapped in the pond when the sluice gates are shut.

There is no need for the farmer to feed the larvae as they will feed on the organisms that are already present in the water. All that he needs to do is to regularly flush out the water in the pond so as to get rid of the excrement-filled, de-oxygenated water and replace it with water rich in oxygen, minerals and food. Flushing is done when the water level in the pond is higher than the level of the sea water outside the pond. Thus when the top few planks of the sluice gate are removed, water will flow from the pond to the sea (the prawn fry do not escape as they usually inhabit the bottom part of the pond).

When the prawns have grown to a sufficient size, the farmer will harvest then by placing a net at the gate whilst opening it at low tide. The harvested prawns may be sold at the market or kept for the farmer's ow consumption.

Birds like the Egrets and Herons are attracted to the area surrounding Sungei Buloh as a result of this prawn farming activity. They were able to feed on the marine life that was left exposed when the ponds were drained for harvesting.

Today, even though these prawn ponds are no longer farmed, they are still rich in life and visitors can still see the birds as they forage for food in the ponds just as they had done many years ago.

For more about
Traditional Prawn Harvesting at Sungei Buloh Nature Park.
Sluice gate management at Sungei Buloh Nature Park.

Here's a humorous look at prawn farming...!
https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/633.gif

 

 


© Sungei Buloh Nature Park

 

 

 


 

Vol 5 No 1
Apr 98


Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh


Workshops
for Children &
for Teachers


5th Anniversary Celebrations: events and messages

BabeWatch R(A): Herons at
Sungei Buloh

Time and Tide Wait for No Man: what you can see at the various
tide levels

Bird Sightings
(Dec 98-Jan 99)

 

Come Experience
the Wild Side of Life
Children's Vacation Workshop

Colleen Goh


The end of the year vacation workshop for kids was held in December 1997. Participants from Pei Hwa Presbyterian School took part in this day-long workshop based on the theme 'Birds of Buloh'.

Through the use of innovative games and activities, participants learnt more about the birds that inhabit the Park. Knowledge acquired included bird identification techniques and different uses of beaks. They also found out how difficult it can be to build a nest after an interesting hands-on session. The next series of vacation workshops will he held during the June School Holiclays. Called "Adaptations in Nature", the workshop is targeted at Primary 5 and 6 students.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/558.jpg
"What do you think of the nest we made?"


The primary aim of this workshop is to introduce children to the strange and wonderful flora and fauna of Sungei Buloh Nature Park and how they have adapted themselves to the different conditions found in the various habitats of the Park.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/557.jpg
Workshop participants
during a games session

Children will participate in learning games, activities and nature rambles, all centering around the theme 'Adaptations in Nature'. They will also have the opportunity to get up close and personal with unusual but interesting creatures like Mudskippers, Horseshoe Crabs, Archerfish, Halfbeaks, Waterhens, Creeper Shells and Changeable Lizardsójust to name a few!


Class size is limited to a maximum of 20 and participants have a choice of two days: 2 June or 5 June. The fee of $40 includes meals and workshop materials.

Teachers' Workshop

This workshop is held once a month on a Saturday morning. It aims to familiarise teachers with the various programmes and materials available at the Park and more importantly, to equip teachers with the necessary krwwledge and skills to conduct field trips to the Park.

The workshop begins with a short session where participants are introduced to the various Park programmes and given an update on the latest amenities and activities that have been set up (for example, the Spot Art Competition). This is followed by a familiarisation tour of two of the more popular walking trails: the Mangrove Boardwalk and Route 1. Here, teachers are taken on a guided walk by our education staff and introduced to the various flora and fauna that can be encountered along the trails.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/561.jpg
"Eeks! What's that?!"
Teachers having fun during the workshop


A new segment that has been included in this year's workshop programme is the introduction of fun and environmentally-friendly activities that teachers can conduct with their pupils while at the Park.

The participants are appreciative of the efforts taken to introduce the Park to them and leave with a better understanding and appreciation of Singapore's wetland paradise.

Response from workshop participants has been encouraging and vacancies for this year's workshops are filling up quickly.

 

 


© Sungei Buloh Nature Park

 

 

 

 

 


 

Vol 5 No 1
Apr 98


Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh


Workshops
for Children &
for Teachers


5th Anniversary Celebrations: events and messages

BabeWatch R(A): Herons at
Sungei Buloh

Time and Tide Wait for No Man: what you can see at the various
tide levels

Bird Sightings
(Dec 98-Jan 99)

 

Countdown
to Sungei Buloh Nature Park's
5th Anniversary Celebrations

.

ong chui leng

December 1998 marks Sungei Buloh Nature Park's 5th Anniversary, and the Park has lined up a series of events to count down to this first major milestone

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/555.jpgKicking off the countdown was a donation of $120,000 from HongkongBank's Care- for-Nature Trust Fund to set up the Sungei Buloh Education Fund.

It will be used to fund the Park's public education activities, including programmes promoting awareness of the Park as an important natural heritage and inculcating a greater knowledge and appreciation of nature. Proceeds and donations collected from visitors to the Park from the sate of publications and activities like the Spot-art Competition will also go into the fund for future projects.

Countdown Events

30 November 1997
A ceremony was held for the setting up of the Sungei Buloh Education Fund. The cheque of $120,000 from the HongkongBank's Care-for-Nature Trust Fund was presented by Mr Connal Rankin (Chief Executive Officer, HongkongBank) to Dr Tan Wee Kiat (Chief Executive Officer, National Parks Board).

Launch of the new Sungei Buloh Nature Park brochure.

The countdown to the 5th Anniversary was kicked

 

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/comma2.jpgDr Tan Wee Kiat, Chief Executive Officer of the National Parks Board, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, Good Morning.

When the Sungei Buloh Park was opened in 1993, HongkongBank was among its first corporate supporters. Even today, if you take a stroll around the Park, you will easily see from the many signages the Bank's involvement in this uniquely important natural heritage of ours. While the educational and instructional signages, which were installed at the inauguration of the Park, have seen better days, given the inevitable wear and tear of the past four years, the ecological importance of the Sungei Buloh nature park and its value to our environmental awareness-building efforts have not, in the least, been diminished. I am also glad to add that the same goes for HongkongBank's commitment to the conservation of the Park and to the environment as a whole.

Having supported the original effort to establish the Park, I am pleased that the Bank has been invited back by the National Parks Board (NParks) to help mark Sungei Buloh's first major milestone and, even more importantly, to participate in NPark's effort to enhance quality and range of educational activities at Sungei Buloh for the enjoyment of Singaporeans and foreign visitors alike.

Being Singapore's first and only wetlands nature park in itself makes Sungei Buloh an ecological jewel in land scarce and urbanised Singapore. Yet I would venture to add that Sungei Buloh's greater value lies in its uniqueness as a living classroom for our school children and, indeed, for all of us. It is on this premise that we have chosen to assist the National Parks Board in its endeavour to raise the profile of the Sungei Buloh Nature Park in the lead-up, as the backdrop behind me puts it, the countdown to its 5th Anniversary.

On this note, I am pleased to announce HongkongBank's donation of S$120,000 to the National Park's Board for the setting up of a Sungei Buloh Education Fund to fund the Park's public education activities.

I hope this Education Fund will go some way to attracting more school children to the Park and, in the process, enrich each and every one of them with a greater knowledge of nature at work and, more importantly, with a deeper appreciation of the importance wetland parks like Sungei Buloh are to our natural landscape.

Before I conclude let me share with you a quick observation. At the height of the recent haze a colleague at the Bank remarked how human beings can be so silly in the way they all tend to take granted, the sunny blue sky in this instance, only to start realising how precious something is when they longer have it.

I hope that in time to come, we will not be saying the same of the Sungei Buloh Nature Park and for that matter, all our other parks and seashores. Hopefully, the setting up of this Education Fund will help us keep the Sungei Buloh Nature Park as
https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/comma.jpga cherished jewel of our natural heritage and a living classroom for generations to come. Thank you.

Connal Rankin
General Manager &
Chief Executive Officer
HongkongBank Singapore

at the launch of the 5th Anniversary Countdown 30 Nov 1997

Birdwatch 1997 (30 Nov - 6 Dec 97)
BirdWatch Week, an annual Park event since 1996, promised fascinating views of Heron Watch migratory birds. Guides with telescopes were stationed at Main Hide to assist visitors in spotting and our feathered friends from afar.

Kid's Lucky Dip (30 Nov - 6 DEC 97)
All the children who visited the Park during this period were kept busy around route 1, collecting clues along the bird trail for a chance at the lucky dip. Armed with our trail booklet: "Endless Summer: The Story of a Seasoned Traveller", the children found out about the wonders of migration from the journey taken by our star, the Common Redshank (Tringa totanus).
https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/637.jpg
Many happy kids went home from the Park not only with newly acquired information on these fascinating birds but also generous prizes like stamp prints, binoculars, first-day covers and other souvenirs, all kindly sponsored by HongkongBank.

Spot Art Competition
(30 Nov 97 - 30 Nov 98)
The 'Care For Nature' Spot Art Competition, which spans the entire year, is open to all children aged between 6-16 years. Each month, 10 top entries will be selected from both the Primary and Secondary category to qualify for the Grand Finale.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/736g.jpgHeron Watch
(17 Jan, 28 Feb, 21 Mar 98)
This features fun-filled activities while on a tour to heronry. The activities will illustrate the survival needs of the herons and the importance of conserving the wetland habitats that are essential to the herons.

Mangrove Mania
(18 Apr, 30 May, 27 Jun 98)

Plant and bring home a part of the mangrove swamp, as part of our mudflat clearance programme.

Ecology Trail (Jul - Sep 98) A trail along Route 1 for a better understanding of the interdependency in the world of living things.

5th Anniversary
The annual BirdWatch event will be held again.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/634.jpgIn addition to the regular wader spotting, we will also be conducting bird-sketching workshops, mime performances and story telling sessions at the Park.


https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/507.jpgMessage from
Tan Wee Kiat
Chief Executive Officer
National Parks Board
at the launch of
the 5th Anniversary Countdown
30 Nov 1997

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/comma2.jpgSungei Buloh's rich food source, thanks to its mudflats and mangroves, has made it a natural stopover site for migratory birds during the colder months. Luckily for us, this very unique attraction and its potential was recognised, and in 1989, the government conserved it as a nature park. Today, people from all walks of life come to see the large variety of birds and plants, which thrive in diverse habitats here in Singapore's only wetland park.

Sungei Buloh Nature Park was officially opened on 6 December 1993 with this mission, 'To be a centre for excellence in tropical wetland management for conservation, education, research and compatible recreation'. The team here at Sungei Buloh has worked very hard, through its educational programmes, publications and collaborations with researchers and institutions, to bring Sungei Buloh closer to Singaporeans. And the response has been encouraging. The Park sees more than 200 visitors each day, However, more can be done to draw on the large untapped market out there.

Sungei Buloh and HongkongBank have recognised this potential, and in preparation for Sungei Buloh's 5th anniversary in December next year, they have come together to organise, not a 3-month, or even a 6-month, but a whole year's programme aimed at letting people discover this very different, very natural part of Singapore. HongkongBank is kindly donating $120,000 towards the Sungei Buloh Education Fund for this purpose. On https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/comma.jpgbehalf of the National Parks Board and Sungei Buloh Nature Park, I would like to extend our appreciation to Hongkong Bank for their generous support.

 

 


© Sungei Buloh Nature Park

 

 

 

 


 

Vol 5 No 1
Apr 98


Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh


Workshops
for Children &
for Teachers


5th Anniversary Celebrations: events and messages

BabeWatch R(A): Herons at
Sungei Buloh

Time and Tide Wait for No Man: what you can see at the various
tide levels

Bird Sightings
(Dec 98-Jan 99)

 

Babe Watch R(A)

linda goh


https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/736g2.jpgIt was a sizzling hot Saturday afternoon. Through the journey was long and winding, that did not deter the more than 60 people from venturing to the spectacular site on 28 February 1998.

The stage was cleared. All of them came to gawk at one loving pair displaying their courtship behaviour, while another was building their love nest.

Oh no, pardon me. Please do not misunderstand. R(A) in this case does not refer to the Restricted (Artistic) classification for films. It stands for Really Amazing. Kindly let me explain. The only babes these visitors were ogling at were the nesting herons of the Park.

Visitors were taken into the Park by our trained volunteers to look for the nesting Purple and Grey Herons. Along the route to the heronry, these participants got to find out more about these birds through interesting analogies and educational games. They even had the chance to build nests and fish like the herons.

The highlight of the programme was seeing these beautiful herons for themselves in the act of building the nest, nestlings begging for food from their parents and parents feeding their chicks through regurgitation. One participant commented that it was an eye-opener and hoped to attend more of such guided tours.

This HeronWatch 98 is one of our programmes leading up to the Park's 5th Anniversary celebrations in December. You are welcome to join our next programme on 21 March. We hope that through these activities, you will be more aware and appreciative of their habitats. See you soon.

 

 


© Sungei Buloh Nature Park

 

 

 

 

 


 

Vol 5 No 1
Apr 98


Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh


Workshops
for Children &
for Teachers


5th Anniversary Celebrations: events and messages

BabeWatch R(A): Herons at
Sungei Buloh

Time and Tide Wait for No Man: what you can see at the various
tide levels

Bird Sightings
(Dec 98-Jan 99)

 

Time and Tide
Waits for No Man

linda goh


Knowing the times of the highest and lowest tides will enable you to catch the Park at its best. Here's what you can see at low and high tide.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/414.jpg
Low Tide
When the tide is low, the mangrove mud is exposed. This is the best time to spot the strange and wonderful creatures that live amongst the mangroves at the Mangrove Boardwalk. Look out for the well-camouflaged Crabs, Mudskippers and maybe even the Horseshoe Crab.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/415.jpgLow tide at the Main Bridge is also fun, as you will be able to spot the green mussels that live on the riverbed. See if you can catch them squirting water from their shells. Look out too for birds like the White-breasted Waterhen foraging for food on the exposed mud, near the riverbank.

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/401.jpg
High Tide

During the migratory season (Sept to Mar), the best time to catch a glimpse of the migratory birds would be during high tide. This is because these birds, which feed on mudflat organisms are scattered all over the exposed mudflats in coastal areas outside the Park during low tide. However, during high tide, these feeding areas are flooded so they will fly into the Park where we always keep one out of our three ponds low for them.

 

 


© Sungei Buloh Nature Park

 

 

 

 

 


 

Vol 5 No 1
Apr 98


Prawn Farming
at Sungei Buloh


Workshops
for Children &
for Teachers


5th Anniversary Celebrations: events and messages

BabeWatch R(A): Herons at
Sungei Buloh

Time and Tide Wait for No Man: what you can see at the various
tide levels

Bird Sightings
(Dec 98-Jan 99)

 

I Spy with My Little Eye
Bird Sightings
for December and January 1998

lim haw chuan

https://www.sbwr.org.sg/wetlands/photos/638.jpgVisitors are always interested to know what animals have been spotted at the Park. This regular column will feature bird sightings at the Park. Not all the sightings are made by Park staff - some are incidental Bird Sighting Record reports made by visitors such as yourself.

If you spot an interesting bird the next time you visit the Park, and wish to make a record of it, feel free to fill up the Bird Sighting Record Book at the Ticketing C,ounter. Happy sighting!

Waders

December

January

Asiatic Dowitcher
Black-tailed Godwit
Common Greenshank
Common Redshank
Common Sandpiper
Curlew Sandpiper
Great Knot
Marsh Sandpiper
Mongolian Plover
Pacific Golden Plover
Ruff
Terek Sandpiper
Whimbrel

0 - 2
0 - 8
86 - 245
5 - 235
0 - 5
102 - 549
0 - 4
174 - 205
0 - 95
276 - 818
0
0 - 4
150 - 224

0
1 - 3
84 - 122
0 - 96
0 - 14
3 - 170
0
108 - 192
2 - 11
259 - 458
0 - 1
0
105 - 165


Interesting incidental Records by Park Staff

Birds

December

January

Lesser Tree Duck
Rusty-breasted Cuckoo
Red-billed Blue Magpie
Chinese Pond Heron
Chestnut-winged Cuckoo

-
-
Visitors Centre
-
Sungei Buloh Besar

Freshwater Pond
Mangrove Arboretum
Hide 2E
Hide 2E
-

Interesting birds sighted by visitors
Ruff
Grey-tailed Tattler
Peregrine Falcon

 

 


© Sungei Buloh Nature Park