Responsible management of our living collection is essential for us to realise our vision of a world-class zoological institution in conservation, education, and inspiring behaviour change. The Institutional Collection Plan (ICP) is the overarching strategy that guides all acquisitions. From time to time, new specimens may need to be acquired, either for genetic sustainability or to phase in new species that fit the ICP.
In accordance with the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums Resolution 29.1, all our animal acquisitions are conducted legally, ethically, and sustainably. The clear majority of our acquisitions are animals born or hatched under human care, usually as part of an exchange, donation (from other zoological institutions, governmental agencies, NGOs) or breeding loan. Many of our animals are also part of collaborative global managed programmes, which ensure species sustainability and genetic integrity. Approval must first be sought from the relevant species programme coordinators before new specimens can be acquired.
Proper management of our living collection also includes transfers of animals to other institutions, either as part of species programs, or to manage surplus animals. Before any animal is transferred to another institution, we will conduct due diligence to ensure the receiving institution meets our requisite standards of ethics, animal care and welfare as outlined in our Animal Relocation policy. In cases where welfare standards will be compromised for the animal, humane euthanasia may be considered. This option may be considered if there is long term negative impact on the animal’s quality of life and all practical options to improve it have been exhausted.
As part of efforts to responsibly manage animals under our care, animals are selected periodically for relocation to other wildlife institutions, either as part of a managed program or to manage population numbers.
Before any animal is relocated to a receiving party, we will conduct due diligence to ensure the institution meets the requisite standards of ethics, animal care and welfare. This includes possessing the adequate resources to ensure the safety and welfare of the animals, allowing us access to view plans, photographs or conduct onsite visits of the facilities the animals will be held in, and providing additional training for staff that will be involved in caring for the received animal.
The receiving party will also be held to providing ethical treatment such as
positive training reinforcement techniques for the animal. Preference will also be given to institutions that are accredited by at least one main international zoological association.
Animals that are relocated as part of an internationally managed program (i.e. breeding programs) must be approved by the designated species program coordinator prior to move.
In the cases of rescued native wildlife, only those that have been assessed by our veterinary team and the species working group to be fit for release will be considered for release in the wild.
All wildlife releases will be conducted with the permission of and in accordance with the regulations and guidelines set out by AVA and or NParks.
As part of our Animal Ambassador Program, animal presentations and contact sessions are invaluable guest experiences for fostering emotional affinity with wildlife and facilitating conservation communication. These experiences include all programs where guests are provided opportunities for close encounters with our animals.
In carrying out the program, we commit to ensuring best practice standards in animal welfare, providing highest standards of safety for staff and guests, delivering conservation communication, and providing quality guest experiences. Our Animal Ambassador Programs are devised along guiding principles such as presenting our animals in a respectful manner, highlighting and promoting their positive natural behaviours, communicating information on natural history and conservation status, empowering guests to conserve the species and providing a safe environment for such close encounters.
Ambassador animals will be cared for in accordance with best practices outlined in our Animal Welfare Code. This includes only training or conditioning them through positive reinforcement methods, which prohibits any form of physical punishment as discipline for cooperation. Young animals may only be separated for hand-raising if the conditions are met to ensure it is in their best welfare interests and with sufficient expert manpower and resources on hand.
Our practices are reviewed on an annual basis, along with the physical and psychological well-being of all animals involved. Animals that are retired from such guest experiences will be bonded to a species companion group or given a suitable retirement facility where they will continue to receive specialised care.
As a wildlife attraction and a collection-based conservation organisation, we prioritise the welfare of our animals as prime importance and our passionate and dedicated team of animal management and healthcare specialists are committed to providing the highest standards of care.
Our animal welfare code is based on global best practices that incorporates the ‘Five Domains’ model for animal welfare. Being mindful of the affective states of the animals in our care, we want them to strive and have the ability to express a wide range of natural behaviours. To achieve this, we work toward providing the Physical/Functional requirements for our animals to achieve the desirable Mental domain of positive welfare state. These Physical domains include our animals’ adequate nutrition, quality of living environment, physical health, and range of natural behaviour.
Our work is also guided by our animal policies, protocols and procedures that were created following best practice guidelines. These policies, protocols and procedures govern our work under the following categories:
One of the key drivers of the loss of wildlife is man’s unsustainable exploitation of natural resources and the accompanying encroachment into wild habitats. We believe that our own survival and quality of life is intrinsically linked to the survival of the many species of plants and animals with which we share this Earth. Functioning ecosystems and biodiversity perform the essential services of providing us with clean air, water, food and shielding us from harmful diseases. Unsustainable consumption and development damage ecosystems, leading to climate change, which in turn reduces biodiversity and natural resources, and ultimately impacting human livelihoods and lives.
As a wildlife conservation organisation dedicated to the protection of wildlife and their habitats, Mandai Wildlife Group (‘The Group’) advocates the responsible and sustainable use of natural resources. We aspire to be climate positive – to fight climate change by reducing emissions of greenhouse gases through our development and everyday operations.
Our Environmental Sustainability Strategy guides us to incorporate sustainability principles in our daily operations and is aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) that are pertinent to our business and operations. We strive to be climate positive through:
We aim to minimise carbon emissions by improving energy efficiency daily operations, exploring the use of clean energy sources, and investing in waste and water treatment and sustainable mobility. We continuously seek out sustainable sources of goods and services that cause minimal harm to the planet and communities.
As part of our broader regional and national conservation efforts, we work to protect and enhance wild habitats in the Mandai Precinct and within our parks so that wildlife continues to thrive. We look for innovative solutions to improve wildlife accessibility to these habitats and provide world-class care for rescued native wildlife. We preserve and protect native flora and fauna through sensitive construction and catalysing forest regeneration. Through in-house research and partnerships with distinguished academic and wildlife institutions, we promote robust knowledge sharing to better protect wildlife.
The Mandai wildlife and nature destination is designed to be carbon efficient and naturally- inspired. The planned architectural and landscape features integrate with the natural environment to passively provide light, shade, ventilation, and thermal and visual comfort, with minimal carbon footprint.
By uncompromisingly acting on our sustainability commitments we actively encourage and inspire our staff, guests and partners to adopt, and be ambassadors for, wildlife and environmentally friendly actions.
By working both internally within our operations and externally with our stakeholders, we believe that the action of many is greater than the sum of its parts, and together, we protect wildlife.
Zoological institutions use various methods to restrict flight in birds, most commonly as a means to prevent the birds from escaping. Flight restriction is also used to enable birds to be displayed in open-style exhibits, free-standing perches or to manage trauma or aggression in some species.
We currently use any one of these two methods to restrict flight in our birds – usage of netted aviaries and wing clipping. These methods were selected based on our high standards for positive bird welfare and management. We prefer to keep our birds in netted aviaries as this allows our birds to display natural behaviours such as flying, courtship displays and roosting while giving them the choice of moving away from disturbances.
Wing clipping is a temporary method for restricting flight and is advised to manage aggression, particularly in when mating certain species. This method involves trimming flight feathers, which unbalances the bird while trying to take off.
While we do not condone the usage of pinioning – an invasive, irreversible procedure that compromises on the bird’s welfare, individual case-to-case assessments will be done to evaluate if a pinioned bird should be acquired from external institutions. These considerations are made based on if the acquired bird will be able to express normal activity levels after transfer, it is of high conservation value and will increase genetic diversity of existing population, and if the bird was recommended for transfer to our facility as part of a managed breeding program.
The illegal wildlife trade is driving species to extinction. As an organisation dedicated to the protection of wildlife and their habitats, we do not endorse illegal, unsustainable, or unethical use and trade of wild animal and plant products.
We commit to: