Singapore Zoo – A Journey into the Rainforest

Singapore Zoo has been known to have among the most beautiful settings in the world, where animals roam freely in open and natural habitats. Covering 28 hectares, 2,530 animals representing 315 species call this home. Perhaps the most recognised resident is the orang utan, and this is the place to enjoy fabulous eye-to eye views of these enigmatic apes. An elevated boardwalk takes you into the treetops where you can observe their natural behaviour at close range. For yet another unique encounter, partake in the unique Jungle Breakfast with Wildlife programme where diners experience first hand the wonder of being so close to these wonderful creatures. The Zoo’s famous open concept is showcased in its other key habitats, such as Australian Outback, Fragile Forest, Hamadryas Baboons – the Great Rift Valley of Ethiopia and Elephants of Asia. Don’t miss the edu-taining animal presentations too such as Splash Safari and Elephants at Work and Play. The Singapore Zoo continues to win awards and accolades, including FORBES ‘One of the World’s Best Zoos’ in 2007. goes behind the scenes to meet some of its staff to find out more about their fascinating jobs.

Natalie Chan is an Assistant Lead Trainer, Animal PresentationsNatalieL

What inspired you to work as a show presenter?

Animals and nature, as nothing lifts my spirit more than looking at or being with animals. When I was young, the Singapore Zoo was my happy place, and watching the late Steve Irwin on TV ignited that passion for animals. He was a true inspiration with his exuberant energy and genuine love for them. Steve, and people like Jane Goodall devoted their lives to animals, became their voice and also helped us to understand and respect animals for what they truly are. That’s why I wanted to be a Show Presenter, to be an ambassador and voice for the animals.

What’s your job like?

No day is ever the same. And because I’m dealing with live animals, no two shows are ever the same, which makes it really interesting and exciting. My day starts with morning checks of all the animals under my charge, after which it will be cleaning of dens, training of the animals, feeding them, and running around to the different shows to present or assist. At the end of the day, as it all winds down, I bid each animal goodnight after ensuring that they’re settled in.

NatalieMWhat are some highlights working at the Singapore Zoo?

Being surrounded by nature tops the list. How many people can say that they can hear the call of gibbons, the sound of elephants trumpeting, or look up and be able to see orang utans playing, all while breathing in the fresh rainforest air, and get paid for it! Furthermore, it’s also great to meet visitors from all around the world, and it’s rewarding to see how happy they are when they get the chance to come up-close with an animal, like a kiss from a sea lion or a gentle tap from an elephant’s trunk; knowing that it will be an experience that they will never forget.

What goals do you wish to achieve in your career at the Singapore Zoo?

Working with animals has been my life’s passion, and driven with a deeper understanding and appreciation of conservation, these will be my goals which I’ll work towards. I hope to gain more knowledge and experience through travelling to other zoos or nature reserves to study and understand animals better, and give back what I’ve learnt. Only through knowledge and understanding can we begin to appreciate the animals for what they are, and help visitors feel the same, and make that difference.

SimhuiLQuak Sim Hui is an Operations Executive

What inspired you to work as an Operations Executive?

I enjoy interacting with people, and as an operations executive, my main job scope is to interact with guests and to ensure that they enjoy their time at the zoo. It is definitely a challenging job, as you need to anticipate and satisfy different guest’s needs, and this makes the job interesting and fulfilling. What’s your job like? As an operations executive, I have to anticipate and understand the needs of all our guests so that they enjoy themselves – from the little ones to the elderly. In short, I ensure that all our guests have a memorable wildlife experience at the Singapore Zoo.

I also supervise and guide our staff to always welcome and be ready to assist our guests, and this includes training and coaching our staff. In addition, I constantly move around the zoo every day to check that all our amenities and facilities are working well. What are some highlights of working at the Singapore Zoo? You get to see animals around you, thus it is definitely a place for animal lovers like myself. And of course you are one of the first few fortunate people to get to see some of the newborn animals here.

SimHuiMBeing a tourist attraction, the zoo also enables me to meet people from different cultures and background, so every day is always different and exciting.

What goals do you wish to achieve in your career at the Singapore Zoo?

I would like to be a dynamic leader to lead others in the area of “operations management” and certainly service delivery.

About Singapore Zoo

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