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Please don't release animals into our wild places
you will do more harm than good

From a pamphlet on animal release produced by the Nature Society (Singapore)

Releasing Animals: Good or Bad?

In Singapore, many people release animals. Here are some facts about this practice.

Many pet shop animals cannot survive in the wild. They no longer have the ability and instinct to find food and shelter, or to run away from predators.

Many animals can only survive in special habitats, such as the rainforest, desert or mangrove swamp. Releasing an animal into the wrong habitata will cause it to suffer and then die.

If we release a foreign animal, it may not survive in our country and climate. For example, a land tortoise from India can only survive well in a seasonal climate.

If we release an anmal from a foreign country, it may compete with our local wild animals for food, shelter, nesting areas and living space. These foreign animals may also eat the babies of local animals.

Can we tell if an animal is sick or healthy? If a sick animal is released, it may infect wild animals which have no immunity against certain diseases.

Infect animals may transmit diseases to humans.

When everyone releases animals, the combined quantity will upset the natural balance. The areas of release will not be able to cope with the sudden increase of animals.

We can stop these cruel situations

Do not buy birds and other wild animals for releasing. Do not patronise these shops.

Do not be directly responsible for the capture of wild animals to continue.

Please do not release these animals:

Red-eared terrapin and Chinese soft shell turtle. These turtles can grow large and are more aggressive. They will cause the decrease of Singapore's own rare turtles.

Birds bought from bird shops. Most of the birds that are bought from bird shops get sick when they are captured and imprisoned in a crowded, unhygenic cage.

Aquarium fish. Most of these fishes are forced to share crowded tanks in the fish shop. Diseases spread easily in such poor conditions.

American bullfog. This aggressive, large frog eats up our smaller native frogs.

Pet animals. It is extremely unkind to abandon your pet.

The Law

In Singapore, it is against the law to release any animal into our public parks, reservoirs, nature reserves and many other places.

It is also against the law to catch wild animals. When we buy a wild animal from a shop, we are therefore involved in a crime.

Wise actions

Do your part to truly show compassion for animals

Rescue and care for animals when needed. It can be a baby bird which has dropped out of its nest or a turtle found in the middle of a road; an injured animal or fishes trapped in a drying pond.

Encourage others not to buy wild animals to keep as pets, for consuption or to release.

Encourage pet owners to love and give proper care to their pet animals, and not to abandon them.

Volunteer your help to organisations that care for animals.

Make others aware about the importance of conserving nature and protecting our environment.

Join an animal welfare group to help protect and improve conditions for all animals.

Join a green group to protect our nature areas. These are homes to countless animals.

Life is cheap: Demand=Supply

When we buy animals to release, we are encouraging the shop-owner to catch even more animals from the wild to sell.

For example, thousands of grass birds are captured from the wild for people to buy for release. Bird and pet shops sell these 'cheap' birds at a price of $1.50 or $2.

Many of these birds die when they are caught, and during the journey to the shops.

Since these are 'cheap' birds, they are treated like dirt. Crowded into dirty cages and standing in their own excrement, they are not given any proper care, food and fresh water.

How can we help to protect and conserve endangered species?

Do not buy and keep endangered species as pets or to eat.

Do not buy any products made from endangered speices. For example, jewellery made from sea turtle shell, elephant ivory and fur of wilds animals.

Do not buy 'medicines' made from endangered species. For example, tiger penis, dried seahorses, bear gall, rhinoceros horn, sea turtle meat, etc. Use herbal remedies instead.

You CAN make a difference!
Join volunteers who support NParks in outreach efforts to educate others about this issue.

Links News articles on the issue
More links about the impact of invasive species
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