Keep endangered animals in holding area until Mandai parks built

Mandai Park Development should consider keeping endangered animals in a holding area until works on the Mandai parks are completed (Many measures in place to reduce wildlife road incidents, by Mandai Park Development; March 29).

After "critically endangered", the next step down on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species is extinction.

Loss of even one animal accelerates the downward slide as it pushes them to inbreed, which results in loss of genetic diversity and leads to weaker animals.

Some of the few remaining Sunda pangolins in Mandai are the result of a conservation project that bred and released them in 2011, with the aim of saving them from extinction.

It would be sad and ironic that they were conserved and released only to end up as roadkill.

With the stakes so high, would it be better to rely on definitive foolproof measures rather than measures that hope to succeed by modifying human behaviour?

Accidents happen when animals dart out onto the road, and no amount of dedicated patrolling can prevent this.

Would it be possible to keep these endangered animals in a holding area, protected and fed, until the construction of the Mandai parks is completed?

Alternatively, the Mandai nature reserve could be fenced up where it borders roads, at least until the guiding fences and eco-link bridge are completed.

These animals are our wildlife heritage.

It would be a feather in Singapore's cap to tell future visitors that we have animals in our Rainforest Park that we conserved and brought back from the brink of extinction.

Jackson Winifred Yap Quee Lan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 04, 2018, with the headline 'Keep endangered animals in holding area until Mandai parks built'. Print Edition | Subscribe