Sweet pickings for those on the scent of wild durians

Fans of local varieties hit the forests despite law against taking fruits from parks, reserves

Above: A man making his way through deep mud in a Bukit Panjang forest last week. The National Parks Board discourages straying off designated trails in search of durians as this can be dangerous and can harm the forest biodiversity. PHOTO: ST READER
A durian picker dressed for the challenge, with safety helmet to boot, as he entered a forested area in Bukit Panjang last week. People are venturing into forests to take the fruits even though this is illegal, with 11 arrested for wilful trespass last month after a fight occurred during durian picking at a protected area.PHOTO: ST READER
A durian picker dressed for the challenge, with safety helmet to boot, as he entered a forested area in Bukit Panjang last week. People are venturing into forests to take the fruits even though this is illegal, with 11 arrested for wilful trespass la
A man making his way through deep mud in a Bukit Panjang forest last week. The National Parks Board discourages straying off designated trails in search of durians as this can be dangerous and can harm the forest biodiversity.PHOTO: ST READER
Above: A man making his way through deep mud in a Bukit Panjang forest last week. The National Parks Board discourages straying off designated trails in search of durians as this can be dangerous and can harm the forest biodiversity. PHOTO: ST READER
Two durian pickers at a forest close to the former Bulim cemetery in Jurong last week, enjoying the fruits of their labour on the spot. PHOTO: ST READER

It is 2am in a forest near the former Bulim cemetery in Jurong. Aside from the constant hum of crickets and frogs, it is eerily quiet as nothing is stirring around you.

But a violent breaking of branches and rustling of leaves, followed by a thud, quickly changes everything.

Please or to continue reading the full article.

Get unlimited access to all stories at $0.99/month
  • Latest headlines and exclusive stories
  • In-depth analyses and award-winning multimedia content
  • Get access to all with our no-contract promotional package at only $0.99/month for the first 3 months*

*Terms and conditions apply.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 26, 2021, with the headline 'Sweet pickings for those on the scent of wild durians'. Subscribe