Primatologist Andie Ang on learning to coexist with nature in Singapore

Singapore primatologist Andie Ang talks about the need to learn to coexist with wildlife and nature, as the boundaries between the city-states urban and rural areas get increasingly blurred.

Video transcript

[MUSIC PLAYING]

DR. ANDIE ANG: For Singapore, you're coming from a Garden City to a city in a garden to now a city in nature is very different framework. Because from a manicured garden, we're not trying to weave the wild, the wilderness, nature into our lives. And so the challenge here is whether we can actually interact positively or at least neutrally with this nature. If people don't know how to interact when they see an animal or what they can do to improve their home if they stay near a habitat, then that's when conflicts would happen.

You know, the issue came about because they were unattended. I mean, it's not deliberate. It's just that it's unattended food, but is it canteen or is it rubbish bins where it's not animal proof. So animals get access to it. And we all know that all these are easily accessible, right? And most of them climb trees to get food. Or it's only there. I will take it. It's free. And then it's high calorie. It's high energy. Rather than me getting a lot of leaves, low content calorie, I have like fries. I have Coke. Why would I leave when this is paradise? So you're giving the animals a reason to stay.

These are really cute.

[LAUGHTER]

You have a regular study subject. You want to continue, right? I like that thought process. I like that expression. I like the emotions and the behavior. And so, to me, it's very interesting when I can collect those information, share those information, whether is it to educate so that people learn to appreciate them and protect them or this information that will help with the conservation.

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