1. Roadkill of an adult female Tapir
  2. Roadkill of a female Tiger
  3. Roadkill of a baby Elephant

Photos: Perhilitan

Malaysia: Malaysia to roll out wildlife crossing awareness measures after spate of roadkill cases
By Sumisha Naidu, 21st October 2017;

Malaysia is planning to build more viaducts and roll out wildlife crossing awareness at driving schools after recording more than 2,000 roadkill cases on the peninsula over five years, many involving endangered animals.

Between 2012 to 2016, wildlife roadkills have included not only the more common Monitor Lizards (Varanus spp.) (667 cases) and Macaques (Macaca spp.) (393) but also endangered animals such as Malayan Tapirs (Tapirus indicus) (43), according to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment in a statement this week.

In the first nine months of 2017, the Malayan Tapir topped the list of endangered animals killed on the road, followed by Asian Leopard Cats (Prionailurus bengalensis) (14), Elephants (Elephas maximus) (2), Binturong or Asian Bearcats (Arctictis binturong) (2) and one Leopard (Panthera pardus).

Johor recorded the highest number of incidents in the past five years with 494 such cases, followed by Kedah (479), Perak (394), Terengganu (310) and Negeri Sembilan (161).

“This totally senseless killing of our animals has to stop and is such a waste of our national heritage,” said minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar in a statement on Monday (Oct 16).

According to officials, wildlife roadkill incidents usually occur at night, when the animal is trying to cross a road or highway from one area of forest to another in search of food, mates “or seeking more suitable habitat for its survival”.

In August, a pair of Tapirs were killed by a motorist at the Gebeng bypass, days after an Elephant died when a tour bus ran into it in Perak.

Last year, a critically endangered Malayan Tiger (Panthera tigris jacksoni) which was pregnant with two cubs was run over by a car headed to Kuala Terengganu.

HELPING ANIMALS GET TO THE OTHER SIDE

Malaysia’s Department of Wildlife and National Parks (PERHILITAN) has so far installed 236 warning signs at 133 roadkill hotspots to warn drivers to slowdown.

“Please slow down when you see these warning signs,” said Dr Wan Junaidi.

“It is indeed disheartening to know that some drivers tend to speed up when they see those animal crossing signs.”

Dr Pazil Abdul Patah, the director of the Department of Biodiversity Conservation at PERHILITAN told Channel NewsAsia that his department is in talks with driving schools across the country to incorporate wildlife crossing awareness into their curriculums by next year.

Three viaducts have also been built specifically to help wildlife cross safely, with plans for more.

“It has been positive to see a lot of wildlife have been using the viaducts – Elephants, Sun Bears (Helarctos malayanus), Tapirs, Deers (F. Cervidae), Wild Boars (Sus scrofa) and smaller animals like Civet Cats (F. Viverridae) and Flat-headed Cats (Prionailurus planiceps),” said Dr Pazil.

Dr Wan Junaidi told Channel NewsAsia most road builders have been told to create wildlife-friendly viaducts when building through forests and sanctuaries as well.

However, environmentalists are concerned that roadkill incidents will only increase with several major rail projects in the works – including the High-Speed Rail linking up Singapore to Malaysia and the East Coast Rail Link cutting across the Titiwangsa mountain range.

Dr Junaidi said that his officers are providing input on these projects for developers to include tunnels and viaducts for wildlife in their construction plans.

Source: Channel NewsAsia

The Wild Boar had attacked a man at Hillview Road.
Photos: Olga, Brianna Degaston Twitter

Man injured after Boar attack at Hillview Road; AVA monitoring situation
19th October 2017;

A man in his forties was injured and taken to hospital after being attacked by a Wild Boar (Sus scrofa vittatus) near a bus stop at Hillview Road on Thursday morning (Oct 19).

Sales specialist Olga, 30, told Channel NewsAsia that she was walking to the MRT station with her husband at around 8.30am when she saw the attack.

“I saw an animal – I thought it was just a big dog with owner – but in two to three seconds, (the) animal start(ed) to attack the man and he fell down and scream(ed), he was really in pain,” she said.

She rushed over to help with her husband, and was joined by another man, who took a bamboo cane from his car and started to hit the Boar. “It worked, and (the) Boar made his escape down to the road,” Ms Olga said.

The Boar was then hit by a bus, she added. Channel NewsAsia understands the Boar has died.

Another man then stopped his car and brought a first aid kit, which he and Olga’s husband used to start bandaging the man’s wounds.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said it was alerted to an incident outside 25, Hillview Avenue at 8.43am and dispatched an ambulance. The man had “cuts and lacerations” on both his legs, said SCDF, adding that the victim was taken conscious to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital.

IT consultant Dan Ranjith, 33, was on his way to work at 8.50am when he noticed the commotion on the other side of the road. “I was walking on the streets and noticed that the Boar was lying down and surrounded by police,” he told Channel NewsAsia.

“When I saw the Boar (it) was still alive and moving,” he added.

Photos circulating online showed the Boar lying on its side on the pavement next to a bus stop. At least two police cars were at the scene and the area was cordoned off with police tape.

The Boar appeared to still be on the pavement nearly two hours after the attack, with lawyer Maurice Oon, 54, telling Channel NewsAsia that he was in a taxi when he saw the “big, dead Wild Boar lying on the pavement” at around 10.15am.

Member of Parliament for Chua Chu Kang GRC (Bukit Gombak) and Mayor of South West District Low Yen Ling said in a Facebook post that the injured man was receiving “the medical care that he needs” in hospital.

She added that she has been in touch with the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA), Land Transport Authority and the Animal Concerns Research and Education Society to ensure that “follow-up procedures are in place” regarding the Boar and the safety of members of the public.

“Should you encounter any Wild Boars, please be advised to not approach or provoke the animal,” she added.

WILD BOAR SIGHTINGS IN THE AREA NOT COMMON: AVA

The AVA said in a statement that Wild Boar sightings in the area are not common and the animal likely emerged from nearby forested areas.

The authority will be putting up signs and will educate residents on what to do when they encounter Wild Boars.

“AVA is monitoring the situation and is working with relevant agencies to put up signage,” it said. “AVA is also working with the community to create awareness and educate residents on what to do when they encounter Wild Boars.”

It is also working with various agencies, such as the National Parks Board and Wildlife Reserves Singapore, to implement measures to “mitigate encounters with Wild Boars and ensure public safety”.

Some possible measures AVA is exploring include putting up signs about wildlife crossings at specific locations to warn motorists, and erecting barriers to prevent wildlife from encroaching onto roads.

This comes after a series of incidents involving Wild Boars in Singapore.

Two people were injured in September after a Wild Boar at the Ayer Rajah Expressway caused an accident. One day later, three others were injured in a car accident involving a Wild Boar at Lentor Avenue.

A woman was also attacked by a Wild Boar in July this year, and needed 60 stitches for a wound in her right leg after the incident at a park in the Upper Thomson area.

A large group of Boars was also spotted near Tuas bus terminal earlier this year.

The AVA said it would like to remind members of the public not to approach, disturb or try to catch Wild Boars.

“The public should keep a safe distance from the Wild Boars and avoid confronting or cornering them. Do not interact with the Wild Boars and keep young children and pets away from them,” the authority said.

Source: Channel NewsAsia

Three people were injured in the accident involving a wild boar along Lentor Avenue.
Photo: Jason Soon

3 injured in accident involving wild boar at Lentor Avenue
29th September 2017;

Three people were injured after a car accident involving a Wild Boar (Sus scrofa vittatus) at Lentor Avenue on Friday morning (Sep 29).

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said it was alerted to the incident along Lentor Avenue at 7am. Three people were conscious when they were taken to Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, SCDF added.

This is the second traffic incident involving Wild Boars in two days on Singapore roads, after one turned up on the Ayer Rajah Expressway on Thursday morning. A motorcyclist and his pillion were hurt in that accident.

For Friday’s accident, a picture posted by a Facebook user Jason Soon showed a damaged black car adjacent to the Wild Boar, which was seen lying on the floor motionless.

According to police, the 40-year-old car driver and his 17-year-old passenger were injured in the accident. A 53-year-old van driver had collided with the car, and he too was hurt.

Channel NewsAsia understands that all three suffered minor back pain.

Source: Channel NewsAsia

Photos: Jackie Lim Facebook

2 injured in accident involving wild boar near Tuas Checkpoint
Read more at http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/2-injured-in-accident-involving-wild-boar-near-tuas-checkpoint-9259060

By , 2017;

Two people were injured when a Wild Boar (Sus scrofa vittatus) turned up at the Ayer Rajah Expressway on Thursday (Sep 28) morning, causing an accident.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said it despatched an ambulance to the scene near Tuas Checkpoint, after receiving an alert at about 7.30am.

The injured duo – a 38-year-old male motorcyclist and his 35-year-old female pillion rider – were sent conscious to Ng Teng Fong General Hospital, said police.

Photos posted on public Facebook group Traffic Report JBS show a group of motorcyclists gathered around the injured as the Boar lay, apparently dead, on the road.

Facebook user Jackie Lim, who had uploaded the shots, said: “The Wild Boar caused a traffic accident”, adding that it happened about 500m after the Tuas Checkpoint.

Wild Boars have been spotted before in Tuas. Videos of a large herd gathering near the Tuas bus terminal were posted online in June. The video clips showed at least 20 standing on the road in front of the National Transport Workers’ Union canteen.

Source: Channel NewsAsia

Photos: Levin Foo Facebook and Junyan Kau Facebook

Water Monitor Lizard spotted on Upper Serangoon Road during peak hour
By Melissa Zhu, 4th February 2017;

Motorists along Upper Serangoon Road on Friday evening (Feb 3) had to make their way around an unusual roadblock – a huge Water Monitor Lizard (Varanus salvator) lying across more than half a lane.

A Facebook Live video posted at 5.18pm showed the reptile sprawled on the road, unmoving, for about a minute, while cars manoeuvred around it.

The man who took the video, who wanted to be identified only as “Mr Lim” said he spotted a “black shadow” on the road before the exit to the Kallang-Paya Lebar Expressway. As it was raining at the time, he said he initially thought that the object was rubbish or fallen branches.

It was only when he saw the Lizard’s head move that he realised what it was.

Mr Lim added that he was able to take the video as he had stopped at a red light, near the reptile, but moved on when the lights changed.

Another witness, who wanted to be identified as “Mr Foo”, told Channel NewsAsia that the Lizard – which he took to be a Crocodile at first – was alive when he passed it, and that he saw it slowly moving to the side.

Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES) deputy chief executive Kalai Vanan told Channel NewsAsia that members of the animal rights group went to the scene, but could not find the Water Monitor Lizard.

Mr Kalai added that the group saw photos that showed the Lizard upside down, suggesting that it could have been run over by a vehicle.

“This part of Upper Serangoon Road is close to adjacent nature areas – mainly Upper Serangoon River and Punggol Park. The Lizard probably got stranded trying to cross the road,” he said.

Mr Kalai said that ACRES would continue to monitor the situation to see if it would get further calls about the Lizard. He also urged members of the public to call ACRES at +65 9783 7782 if they saw wild animals in distress.

“However, when spotted on roads, time is of the essence. If possible and it is safe, members of public can try and divert traffic while waiting for our arrival. This will ensure the safety of the animal and drivers or riders.”

The Water Monitor is the most common Monitor Lizard found in Singapore and can grow as long as three metres, according to NParks’ website, which added that the reptiles can be found in forests and mangrove swamps, as well as man-made canals.

Source: Channel NewsAsia

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Oil spill off Johor: Affected fish farms plan to seek compensation
6th January 2017;

With affected fish farms mulling legal action in the wake of Tuesday’s oil spill, lawyers told Channel NewsAsia that the ship owners responsible for the spill are liable.

Source: Channel NewsAsia

  1. Gills N’ Claws, one of the affected coastal fish farms in Singapore.
  2. Oil slicked Green Mussels (Perna viridis) seen on a rope at Gills N’ Claws fish farm.

Photos: Winnie Goh

Oil spill off Johor: Affected fish farms plan to seek compensation
By Lianne Chia & Vanessa Lim, 6th January 2017;

One fish farm lost almost its entire Chinese New Year harvest, after a vessel collision off Johor on Tuesday (Jan 3) resulted in about 300 tonnes of oil spilling into the sea.

Now, Gills N’ Claws, which runs a fish farm north of Pulau Ubin, said it is already in talks with its lawyers and will consider taking legal action against the shipping companies in question.

“Our lawyers told us we can sue the ship owners for compensation,” said Gills N’ Claws’ CEO Steven Suresh. “But first we will ask them amicably how they plan to compensate us, and then see what they say.

"If they don’t want to compensate us, then we will have to take legal action.”

The company estimates its losses could run to as high as S$700,000. It saw the deaths of about 70 per cent of the fish meant to be sold in time for Chinese New Year, but the larger proportion of its losses come from having to change all the infrastructure that was ruined by the oil.

“Just redoing the infrastructure alone is going to cost us a bomb,” said Mr Suresh. “It’s easier for me to tear the whole thing down and build a new system than to clean up the oil.”

Ship owners liable for compensation: lawyers

But how likely is it that they will be successful in recouping their losses? Lawyers Channel NewsAsia spoke to said that under Singapore law, these fish farms are eligible for compensation from the ship owners responsible for the spill.

“If the collision was caused by the fault or negligence of any of the ships involved, the fish farms would likely have a claim against the party at fault,” said K Murali Pany, managing partner of Joseph Tan Jude Benny LLP. “If the party does not offer payment, the fish farms will have to bring a claim in court, and a ship arrest to obtain security for their claims may also be possible.”

The Government can also take steps to penalise shipping companies for causing oil spills that affect Singapore, according to S Suressh, partner at Harry Elias Partnership and head of the Aviation and Shipping Practice Group. He said the master, agent and owner of the ship can be fined up to a maximum of S$1 million under the Prevention of Pollution of the Sea Act.

In a 1993 case involving accidental pollution, the fine imposed was about S$10,000. But penalties are much more severe in cases of deliberate pollution. “In 1996, a tanker dumped oil into the sea. The master was sentenced to three months’ imprisonment and fined S$400,000. The ship’s owner and its agent were also fined S$400,000 each.”

He added that the fish farms looking to make a claim will have to take the matter up with the representatives of the owner of the vessel. There is also no fixed time frame for it to be resolved, as each case is different. “If matters cannot be resolved, then claimants can sue the owners, but this is rarely necessary as most claims of this nature are settled,” he said. “The ship probably has insurance coverage for this.”

Fish farms taking a wait-and-see approach

In the meantime, affected fish farms are still assessing their damage and taking a wait-and-see approach. President of the Fish Farmers’ Association Timothy Ng said they are still exploring their options and are currently having preliminary discussions. “But it is likely that we will need to make some claims,” he said.

It is also not easy to gauge the actual impact of the oil spill on his association’s members, he added. “There are a few farmers directly impacted, but for others … I heard from a farmer closer to the Changi side that they could see (the) oil coming.”

“So we will only know in a few weeks, when everything is settled, what the impact is on their farms.”

As of Friday (Jan 6), the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) has issued orders for 12 farms to suspend fish sales until food safety evaluations are complete.

Fish available in the market is safe for consumption, AVA added.

AVA has also been visiting coastal fish farms to ascertain and mitigate the situation, as well as assist in the clean-up. Oil-absorbent pads and canvas have been issued to 25 farmers near the site of the oil spill to help protect their fish stock.

It added that while some farms said that about 250kg of fish have died, most of the farms in the same area did not report any, and that there is “minimal impact to supply”.

Source: Channel NewsAsia