Singapore might be small; its area is only about 791 km2, which is about 0.03% of Indonesia, or 0.007% of the USA! With such a small area, Singapore has several parks and gardens, including four wildlife reserves: Night Safari, River Safari, Singapore Zoo, and Jurong Bird Park.
In the past week, I had a chance to visit two of them: Night Safari and Jurong Bird Park. It was such a great experience, I want to compare their management to Indonesian’s approach to national parks and gardens. You might still remember when one of the elephants in Kebun Binatang Bandung (Bandung Zoo) died because the managing company could not provide a vet when the elephant got sick. Yani was 37 years old, but she did not die in vain. As soon as the words reached the mayor of Bandung, Ridwan Kamil, the mayor decided to punish the company and watch their management from that time on.
There was also an issue that a lion in Taman Safari Indonesia (Indonesia Safari Park) was being drugged to keep it ‘tame’ during photo sessions with the visitors. However, the management denied this issue. Regardless of that, the lack of funding and government watch seem to be the causes of these things to happen.
So, what can we learn from Singapore?