VISITORS to Singapore can soon expect a new attraction in the form of a marine park in southern Sisters' Islands.
In a speech at the launch of the Festival of Biodiversity 2014 on Saturday, minister of state for national development, Desmond Lee, revealed that the new park will span about 40ha, around Sisters’ Islands and along the western reefs of St John’s Island and Pulau Tekukor.
The National Parks Board (NParks) is working with marine nature groups on guided intertidal walks and dive trips featuring a variety of coral, fish and other marine life.
For a start, from next month, guided walks will be organised at Big Sister’s Island, one of two Sisters' Islands.
NParks will also put in place basic facilities for outreach and education activities on St John’s island, such as storyboards and classrooms for conducting workshops, talks and camps.
Lee also revealed that nurseries will be established to conserve marine organisms such as giant clams and corals and reintroduce them into Singapore’s waters.
The park will be used, too, for research on tropical marine ecosystems to further NParks’ understanding on marine environment conservation.
The Straits Times quoted National Biodiversity Centre director Lena Chan as saying that there are plans for downloadable trail guides, explanatory signs and live streaming of the islands’ wildlife.
The centre’s coastal and marine deputy director, Karenne Tun, was also quoted as saying that NParks will be doing a feasibility study to fully map the islands, take a census of reef life and work out how many visitors can be allowed without harming wildlife.