Research Themes

WRSCF will review project proposals and provide grants for conservation efforts on local wildlife, conducted in Singapore only.

Projects must contain one or more of the following aspects:

Restoration of natural habitats

The original habitat of Singapore was mainly lowland evergreen rain forest, with dipterocarp forest on drier ground, freshwater swamp forest in low-lying areas, and mangroves around much of the coast. All have been degraded in quality and reduced in area. The same is true for the major intertidal and marine ecosystems such as mudflats, seagrass beds and coral reefs. Projects of interest could target improved conservation, management and restoration of such ecosystems.

Protection, management and re-introduction of endangered species

Being small, Singapore can only support small populations of any given species, so that many are inherently rare.  Added to the pressures of development, habitat loss, land reclamation, climate change and invasive alien species, this has resulted in many requirements for species recovery. The Singapore Red Data Book lists species threatened within Singapore, though many of these may be common elsewhere. Singapore is home to a few endemic species requiring conservation, yet supports globally significant populations of a few species threatened elsewhere (such as Straw-headed Bulbul, Great-billed Heron, and Grey-headed Fish-eagle). WRS is open to a broad interpretation of endangered species, and projects that make use of a common species as a model to develop techniques applicable to rare species may also be of interest to the Conservation Fund.

Conservation education

WRS is fully conscious of the need for public support of conservation. This can be strengthened by innovative projects and activities, making use of new media, or older media used in a new way. The multiplier effect and the training of trainers can be further exploited. Members of the public can participate as citizen scientists by contributing sightings to a database, or carrying out regional or nationwide activities. Educational projects should, as far as is possible, incorporate a mechanism for assessing their effectiveness.

Identification and management of biodiversity-rich areas in Singapore

Particular sites in Singapore can be significant to conservation because they are biodiversity-rich, or because they contain just one or a few species of special interest.  As land use is dynamic, areas of significance can shift. The scope for legal protection of new areas in land-scarce Singapore is very small. However, we need to keep track of which areas are important, and there is certainly scope for innovative management. This could include new techniques, or management by non-conventional groups such as grassroots communities.