TOC and TMG*, both occupying locales at the more responsible end of the cowboy town that is our cyberspace, created a fuss about the culling of the fowl around Sin Ming Avenue.
I really don’t know if they were Red Junglefowl, as both TOC and TMG, claimed; or as the AVA seemed to imply domesticated chickens gone feral or mixed breed. It would be a shame if Red Junglefowl were culled.
Two interesting observations: the willingness of the anti-PAP 30% to believe an ang moh even if he’s no expert, and how cock the AVA can be.
Ang moh always tua kee
Waz interesting is that these publications and the S’poreans they quoted, and those other S’poreans jumping on the band wagon and criticising the AVA and the PAP administration, seems to have accepted the word of an ang moh that the fowl were Junglefowl, even though he admitted that no tests were conducted. He directed a series** that among other animals featured these chickens:
Andrew Scott, director of Wild City in response to the news of the culling commented, “I directed the episode of the TV programme “Wild City”, and we featured those very birds. I have very fond memories of the week we spent filming on Sin Ming Ave. We filmed all over the island for that show, but that street always stuck in my mind as the most charming and characterful place we visited. I would dispute the assertion that they are “chickens, not jungle fowl” – They are exactly the same species (only genetic testing would be able to differentiate wild type fowl from domesticated birds, and even then the difference is debatable).
He expert meh? Ang moh tua kee isit?
AVA: a bunch of headless chickens
But let’s face it, AVA’s response to the “noise” has been pathetic. Its latest attempt at damage control got this response in the Forum section of our constructive, nation-building ST:
No consistency in AVA statements
The letter by Dr Yap Him Hoo, director-general of the Agri-food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) (“AVA concerned about bird flu risk, not noise of chickens“; Feb 15), contradicts an earlier statement by Ms Jessica Kwok, AVA group director of the animal management group (“Free-ranging chickens may be culled“; Feb 2), that the authority had received requests to manage the free-ranging chicken population due to noise pollution.
The impression that the AVA took action because of noise was, therefore, not due to various media reports. Rather, it was created by the AVA itself.
With such contradictory statements from two high-profile figures in the AVA, what is the public to believe?
It gives the impression that the AVA top management is not working as one.
Dr Yap’s statement that the chickens were at risk of being exposed to bird flu from migratory birds, as the chickens could catch the disease through direct contact with them or through their droppings, is flawed.
Free-ranging chickens are few in number, compared to the many pigeons, mynahs and crows congregating at public eating places, snatching food and leaving their droppings all over the place.
Doesn’t this group of birds pose a greater risk of being carriers of bird flu, should there be an outbreak in Singapore?
It would be more credible for the AVA to come up with long-term measures to solve the pigeon, mynah and crow problem here, instead of culling chickens as a stop-gap measure.
These other birds are not only a health risk, but a noise nuisance as well.
Ronnie Lim Ah Bee
Background for those not in S’pore during CNY
The AVA culled some noisy chickens claiming that they were a bird-flu risk. It said that they were not Red Junglefowl as alleged by the usual suspects.
However someone unearthed a series shown here in 2015 which was made with the support of the MDA**.
In a segment of one a two-part series on wild life in the city-state, Sir David Attenborough said that the chickens around Sin Ming Avenue were Red Junglefowl, the ancestors of domesticated chickens. Footage showed the chickens had grey legs and that they can fly; domesticated chickens have yellow legs and can’t fly. But please note that chup cheng chicken, the result of crossing breeding, could have these characteristics.
The video got the feathers flying and the anti-PAP cybernuts upset.
At the very least, the AVA should
cull fire those responsible for its response for the culling especially as it seems that they were not aware of the series.
*Waz interesting is that a TMG tua kee (no not the wannabe be Sith Lord turned Jedi) is trying hard to show that AVA misled the public about the reason for the cull, although the facts show otherwise.
The two-part series produced by local company Beach House Pictures and supported by MDA through the Public Service Broadcast funding, is part of a series of seven SG50 documentaries. The first episode titledUrban Wild, which focuses on the wildlife who have made their homes among Singapore’s urban landscape, features civets in roof cavities and wild otters at the Marina Reservoir. The second episode,Hidden Wild, takes audiences to Singapore’s hidden wildlife spots like the coastal wetlands and offshore islands, which have become thriving habitats to a variety of creatures.