The wildlife park's panda stars Kai Kai & Jia Jia could have babies in the next 2 years.
River Safari, Asia’s first and only river-themed wildlife park, celebrated its official opening with much fanfare on Friday. But those of you who were hoping for news of a new panda edition, you might be disappointed.
Claire Chiang, chairman of Wildlife Reserves Singapore, said the possibility of Singapore’s giant panda celebrities, Kai Kai and Jia Jia, having babies could happen in the next two years.
“We are hoping for good news, maybe in the next two years… nature has to take its course and through close observation, and learning from other experts, we will find ways of promoting that connectivity," said Ms Chiang.
The 12-ha River Safari, which was offically opened by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, offers visitors a wildlife adventure inspired by the world’s most iconic rivers, including the Amazon, Ganges, Mekong, Nile and Yangtze rivers.
Built at a cost of $160 million, River Safari houses one of the world’s largest collections of freshwater fauna.
The wildlife park features 6,000 animal specimens representing 200 species, of which 40 are threatened. These include river giants and mega fishes such as the giant river otter, giant freshwater stingray, Mekong giant catfish and Singapore’s very own pair of resident giant pandas, Kai Kai and Jia Jia.
Speaking at the official opening on Friday, PM Lee said Singapore needs to upgrade the tourism industry to continually refresh its attractions and events.
He said consumers' tastes have changed and competitors are stepping up their game, so Singapore needs to continually refresh its attractions and events to make it an attractive tourist destination.
He said River Safari is a place where "diverse cultures meet and enrich our multi-racial community" and is an example of how the Republic has become a better home.
Since the River Safari’s soft opening in April last year, the wildlife park has attracted more than 1.1 million visitors from over the world.
River Safari opens daily from 9am to 6pm and tickets are priced at S$25 (adult), S$16 (child between 3-12 years) and $12 (local senior citizens 60 years and above).
From 5 March 2014, tickets to the Amazon River Quest boat ride will be priced at $5 (adult) and $3 (child).
Click on to learn more about River Safari.
Photo caption: The Amazon River Quest, a boat ride which meanders through a 483m man-made river, brings visitors up-close to nearly 30 animal species that live along the edges of the Amazon River including the jaguar, Brazilian tapir, capybara and giant anteater.
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