Jurong Bird Park successfully breeds 2 highly endangered bird species

·Editorial team
A Santa Cruz ground-dove chick (left) that was hatched at the Jurong Bird Park on 31 December last year and a straw-headed bulbul fledgling (right). Both species are considered highly endangered in the wild. (PHOTOS: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)
A Santa Cruz ground-dove chick (left) that was hatched at the Jurong Bird Park on 31 December last year and a straw-headed bulbul fledgling (right). Both species are considered highly endangered in the wild. (PHOTOS: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)

Singapore’s Jurong Bird Park (JBP) announced on Wednesday (23 January) that it has successfully bred two highly threatened bird species – the Santa Cruz ground-dove and the straw-headed bulbul.

“The park has welcomed four Santa Cruz ground-dove chicks over the past few weeks, making Jurong Bird Park the first zoological institution worldwide to breed this species under human care,” it said in a press release.

JBP added that it had also successfully bred four straw-headed bulbul chicks over the past two years, with the most recent chick arriving in July last year.

Rescued from poachers, erupting volcanoes

A Santa Cruz ground-dove father nurturing his days-old chick. Given the volatile environment of the species’ native homeland – the Solomon Islands – there is not much recorded data on the birds. (PHOTO: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)
A Santa Cruz ground-dove father nurturing his days-old chick. Given the volatile environment of the species’ native homeland – the Solomon Islands – there is not much recorded data on the birds. (PHOTO: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)

The park explained that it in August 2018, 60 Santa Cruz ground-dove were rescued from poachers and erupting volcanoes on the Solomon Islands.

Noting that the rescued birds represented “probably half of the world’s wild population”, they were then brought to JBP to form the world’s only assurance colony.

“The goal is to ultimately repopulate their homeland when circumstances allow,” said the park.

Only stronghold of the species

A straw-headed bulbul chick (left) at the park’s breeding and research centre and a young adult bird seen in the park’s Wings of Asia exhibit. The species is one of the most highly traded songbirds in South-east Asia. (PHOTOS: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)
A straw-headed bulbul chick (left) at the park’s breeding and research centre and a young adult bird seen in the park’s Wings of Asia exhibit. The species is one of the most highly traded songbirds in South-east Asia. (PHOTOS: Wildlife Reserves Singapore)

JBP said it experienced similar success in breeding the critically endangered straw-headed bulbul – one of the most heavily traded songbird species in South-east Asia.

“It is believed that this species is extinct in half of their range states within Southeast Asia, and Singapore is likely the only stronghold of this species with just over 200 individuals remaining in the wild, according to the local nature community,” said the park.

The species is currently on display at JBP’s Wings of Asia exhibit, which houses other threatened bird species, including the Santa Cruz ground-doves.

More Singapore stories:

Singapore’s core inflation rose to 1.9% in December

Jailed: Couple involved in scheme to rob, steal from prostitutes

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting