Send free-ranging chickens to Pulau Ubin

I was dismayed to read about the mass culling of chickens at Thomson View and Sin Min Avenue ("Give and take needed over animals: Minister"; Feb 3).

Surely there are alternative ways to deal with the problem.

It is appalling that roosters and chickens have been relegated to the status of pests.

Fowls have always been one of man's best friends. Roosters wake residents up without fail every morning. Hens lay eggs, and chickens are a source of food.

Culling should be used only in exigencies, such as during the outbreak of diseases such as the H5N1 avian flu.

The authorities should consider transferring these chickens to Pulau Ubin, which has plenty of space away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

They would be able to successfully blend into the rustic and pristine environment there and add vibrancy to the island's fauna.

Visitors to the island, especially young children, will have the opportunity to interact with these live animals, instead of seeing them only in supermarkets.

The Agri-food and Veterinary Authority should think out of the box when it is confronted with problems. It should actively seek the public's views and feedback.

We simply cannot, and must not, resort to killing animals whenever we receive complaints.

Catherine Tai Siew Leng (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 08, 2017, with the headline 'Send free-ranging chickens to Pulau Ubin'. Print Edition | Subscribe