May 28, 2012
After two whole days of talking, seeing and showing the diverse kinds of plants and animals of the land or marine kind at the Botanical Gardens for the Singapore’s first ever Biodiversity Festival, the answer to the question “Singapore got wildlife meh?” has definitely got to be a resounding, “ABUDEN!?” (abuden is derived from the Hokkien expression “ah boh, then?”, a Singlish expression meaning “if not, what then?” usually used as a sarcastic retort to rhetorical questions). Here’s a recap of the festival with the help of the hordes of pictures and tweets that were being posted live from the event venue so you can relive the festival! Photo: Ivan Kwan
Young ones (and several adults!) got to learn about the complex and intricate food webs that exist in our marine ecosystem with the help of some simple board games! They also learned that these food webs exist in the ocean that surround Singapore.
Visitors also got to interact with our marine ecosystem by colouring in this beautiful sheet of our mangroves, coasts and reefs that was prepared the superbly talented Chay Hoon!
Speaking of Chay Hoon, here she is (adorned with plushie sea cucumbers, nudibranches, and spotted stingray!) speaking to President Tony Tan about Heart urchins! President Tan was the Guest of Honour at this event and helped launched the first ever Biodiversity Festival, which we hope will be the first of many!
The Hantu Blog also took the opportunity to launch the sale of our marchandise – trucker caps (mardigras cuttlefish not included!), canvas shopper totes and white dri-fit polo tees! Proceeds from the sale of these items help fund marine outreach and exploration efforts in local waters! If you’d like to grab some of these items for yourself, email us!
“Kingfishers don’t swallow roaches live, they bash them against the tree!” Animated talks at the RMBR booth. Our ecosystems are dynamic and interdependent, and the Festival was a good opportunity to learn about plants and animal from a range of habitats in Singapore!
There were tanks with live seagrasses & seaweeds, and some marine critters too! So visitors got to explore our shore right in the middle of the city! How fantastic is that?! Photo: Ivan Kwan
Siti talks about seastars and other spineless creatures. Yes! It’s ALIVE!
Minister Tan Chuan-Jin stoops down to photograph a specimen on display at the Raffles Museum Toddycats booth! Photo: Ivan Kwan
Chay Hoon and Ria began the idea of making adorable sea creature plushies to decorate the marine volunteers with. This evoked a relentless desire within volunteers and members of the public alike to erect a table right in the middle of the festival from where they would manufacture these odd adornments. It attracted a lot of attention and generated a lot of fun! Here’s Abby of the Bluewater Volunteers with her spider conch and frogfish made right here at the Biodiversity Festival!
Posters of projects done by NUS undergrads on Singapore’s biodiversity also received a lot of public attention! Photo: Ivan Kwan
There were booths about birds and butterflies, dragon flies and mangrove trees! Photo: Ivan Kwan
Marcus Ng at the Seashore CSI table sharing stories of Singapore’s biodiversity that can be encountered and investigated right on along our beaches!
Debby Ng teaches the young ones about Singapore’s marine life with the help of some puzzles & games! Photo: Ivan Kwan
Even in the last few hours of the festival on the second day, volunteers working on the marine plushies were still too enthused to pack up and leave!
If you missed the festival this weekend, we have good news for you! The wonderfully informative and interactive boards that take you from our seagrass beds to our coral reefs, will be roving Singapore’s heartlands over the course of the year, so look out for them!
Ivan Kwan doing some seashore forensics with visitors to the festival! A big THANK YOU to all the volunteers who worked so hard to make this event possible, and to the staff at NParks. I was really inspired by all the energy and enthusiasm of the various groups present at this event. It is hard not to feel optimistic for the future of our environment when you see so many people working passionately, and from all the positive reactions we got from the public. Looking forward to the next Biodiversity Festival!