Heads up, nature enthusiasts. If you’re looking for a new spot to explore and bask in the best that Mother Nature has to offer, the Mandai Mangrove and Mudflat is slated to become the country’s newest nature park when it opens in mid-2022.
Situated three kilometers east of Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve — which just celebrated its 25th anniversary on Sunday, when the National Parks Board (NParks) made the announcement — the 73 hectare area will comprise of a 26 hectare mangrove forest and a 42 hectare mudflat. Ecologically connected to Sungei Buloh, the park will be located along two upcoming recreational routes: the Rail Corridor and the Round Island Route.
Currently considered as state land, the new nature park will be a place for outdoor education and research. NParks will furnish its grounds with amenities that could include a nature trail, bicycle racks, and bird hides, to offer visitors a view of migratory birds feeding at the mudflat, and to minimize impact on the mudflat.
Second Minister for National Development Desmond Lee revealed that this initiative is part of Singapore’s endeavors to strengthen the conservation of wetland biodiversity here. Under NParks’ management, the Mandai Mangrove and Mudflat, along with its threatened species of mangroves, crustaceans, and migratory shorebirds, can be monitored and protected.
The reserve and mudflat act as resting and feeding stops for birds that fly south for the winter, and Lee explained that Sungei Buloh has been a major stopover for migratory shorebirds that travel from as far as the Arctic Circle to Australia and New Zealand. Since the birds usually arrive in Singapore around September, most of the development works on the nature park will be conducted outside migratory season.