#11 Bukit Timah Nature Reserve

Hello everybody! Recently we visited Bukit Timah Nature Reserve and over there I really learnt a lot about the flora and fauna in Singapore, and learnt many facts about Bukit Timah!

(Though we didn’t see this in the park) While we were walking out through my condominium, we came across a Changeable Lizard (Calotes versicolor)!

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Changeable Lizard
Calotes versicolor

 

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Fallen leaves around Bukit Timah Nature Reserve reminded me that they are vital for the soil as they contain many minerals. They decompose and provide nutrients for the trees and plants!

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First we went through the South View path where we saw a beautiful vine which looked like a twisted rope! On the way we saw magnificent tree, and when we looked closely we spotted a skink which was well camouflaged!

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There were many ‘terentang’  leaves around. They can be easily spotted as they have a pair of ‘ears’ at the base of the stalk. We also noticed this fungus that looked beautiful among them!

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As we walked we heard many sounds made by cicadas in the canopy trees and we saw  many monkeys swinging around. Unfortunately I could only get a blurred photo of the Long tailed Macaque! We also saw this tall tree with beautiful vines on it.

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We decided to go for a little adventure through the Rock Path. The stairs are really steep and so were the several rocks we had to climb- but it was exciting and adventurous and I recommend this trail to all who’d like a bit of excitement! On the trail, we spotted a Lesser Grass Blue butterfly! (Zizina otis lampa) and found a  beautiful skeleton of a leaf.

 

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Lesser Grass Blue 
Zizina otis lampa

 

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As we neared the summit we spotted a swarm of ants that were travelling from one side of the stairs to the bushes. I loved the way they moved in a well-synchronized, organized way!

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We also saw a beautiful butterfly before we ascended the steps to the summit. After searching in the  ‘NSS Field Guide to the Butterflies in Singapore’, I found out that the butterfly I saw was the Malay Viscount (Tanaecia pelea pelea)

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Malay Viscount
Tanaecia pelea pelea

 

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When we reached the summit of the park, we felt a huge sense of accomplishment.

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Earlier as we headed towards the summit, we saw a Clouded Monitor Lizard(Varanus nebulosus )that we managed to take a short video of!

My mother and sister actually visited Bukit Timah Nature Reserve a few weeks before this and were lucky enough to see a Colugo/Flying lemur ( Galeopterus variegatus). Sadly I could not catch it this time!

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Colugo/Flying Lemur
Galeopterus variegatus
Picture credits: Bhavani Prakash

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Rawrr! This was actually a tiger that lived in Bukit Timah and has been displayed as a stuffed animal  in the Visitor Centre. I can’t believe that tigers used to live in Singapore, once upon a time. Do visit the centre so that you can read about the wildlife that was and is currently found in Bukit Timah!

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Here are some facts I learnt about Bukit Timah:

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  • Bukit Timah is the highest hill in Singapore, covering 3,043 hectares, with a height of  164m.
  • It was identified on the 1828 map by Frankin and Jackson as Bukit Timah.
  • Bukit Timah was where the last fight between the Japanese and British took place. The British surrendered on 11 Febuary 1942 in the Ford Factory at Bukit Timah
  • Alfred Russel Wallace frequently visited the Bukit Timah hill and declared it as ‘exceedingly productive’ due to its rich biodiversity.
  • It has over 840 species of flowering plants and over 500 fauna species.
  • It is one of the largest patches of primary rainforest left in Singapore.

See you next time!

Lavanya Prakash

https://mynatureexperiences.wordpress.com

https://twitter.com/MyNatureExp

https://www.youtube.com/user/MyNatureExperiences

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