Category Archives: talks

Mon 31 Oct 2016: 6.30pm @ LT27 – Free Public Talk: Professor Jerry Coyne: “Evolution Is True, And Why People Still Don’t Believe It”

We are pleased to co-host with the Humanist Society of Singapore, Professor Jerry Coyne for a public talk on Evolution on 31 October. As spaces are limited, please register for your free ticket via eventbrite! lkcnhm-hss-coyne.eventbrite.sg.

lkcnhm-hss-coyne

Make a difference – Toddycats eulogised by Joseph Koh during NUS Life Sciences commencement!

Mr Joseph Koh, aka Spiderman of Singapore, is a distinguished alumni of the Faculty of Science who has been very active in conservation since retirement from a distinguished career in government service. As such, he has observed local natural history scene including the activity of undergraduates in public education. and research.

Joseph Koh NUS Commencement 10 Jul 2015

During the commencement ceremony for Life Science graduates, he talked about “Making a difference” and highlighted their efforts in nature conservation, through Toddycats and NParks.

Indeed just this year alone, we have seen them actively contributing to Ubin Day, the Festival of Biodiversity, numerous Year-Round Coastal Cleanups, Love MacRitchie walks, OtterWatch Bishan, Operation No Release, Bukit Timah patrol, Kent Ridge Heritage Trail and the Himalayan Mutt fundraiser. They do this as pure volunteers, as this is not an incentivised volunteer group.

Joseph had this to say about “Making a Difference”:

“My third life lesson is that we will be warmed with joy if we try to make a difference in whatever we do.

Here, I am not trying to preach that we should change the world, level up inequalities, touch the life of others, or do something to reduce global warming. These lofty ideals are good. We should contribute where we can.

To me, “making a difference” is simply a state of mind: we just need to resist our natural tendency to keep things going, to carry on business as usual.

It means we constantly remind ourselves not to fall into the trap of mindlessly following the crowd, mindlessly copying precedents, and mindlessly doing “more of the same”.

Such a state of mind has simply made my job, and that of many of my public service colleagues, more satisfying.

We were happy that we had not ended up as just another robotic gate-keeper, another defender of the status quo.

With this consciousness to make a difference, it became natural for us to constantly find new ways to work smarter, encourage our junior colleagues to think more creatively, inspire them to be more curious and more passionate, and get everybody to grow and blossom.

And you don’t have to be in the government to make a difference for Singapore and Singaporeans.

Today, I can see that many passionate Singaporeans are already making a difference towards nature conservation through their voluntary work.

Some of them are here, sitting in front of me as part of the graduating class, or as young academic staff “arrowed” to attend this ceremony.

They organise and participate in river and coastal clean-ups. They blog about our jungle in jeopardy, the biodiversity of our seashores, and the plant life in our “city in a garden”. They volunteer as toddy-cats, or as NParks nature guides, helping out in biodiversity surveys and taking children, “uncles” and “aunties” out for nature walks.

Many of them brave the scorching sun, thunder storms, sinking mud, and for those doing marine surveys, wake up at two am in the morning just to catch the low spring tide before sunrise.

They may not realise it themselves, they are actually making a difference by igniting the passion of the next generation of Singaporeans to better appreciate and protect our precious natural heritage.

I salute all such people.”

The full text of Joseph’s speech can be viewed here: Joseph Koh NUS Commencement – speech, 10 Jul 2015.pdf.

Well done to all the undergraduates who have been contributing as volunteers in NUS Toddycats, NParks, BES Drongos, Naked Hermit Crabs and various other groups. Keep up the good work!

Toddycats are now preparing for the Biodiversity of Singapore Symposium IV.

Photo by Dr. Jeffrey Low.

The Himalayan Mutt Project by Debby Ng!

Hosted by NUS Peace and Toddycats, Debby Ng, co-founder of the Himalayan Mutt Project was invited to share her inspiring story of how this project started in 2014. Warmly welcomed by Mr Sivasothi, Debby shared her story with an audience of close to 40 people. Many showed their support for the project!

himalayanmuttproject-15

A warm welcome to Debby!

Continue reading

Wed 11 Feb 2015 @ NUS LT34 – Debby Ng speaks about Himalayan Mutt Project!

Debby Ng presents “The Himalayan Mutt Project”
From Singapore to Nepal with Love!
Wed 11 Feb 2015: 7.00pm – 8.00pm @ NUS LT34 (Faculty of Science)

Explore the majestic and mysterious Himalaya with Singaporean-photojournalist Debby Ng and meet some of the regions’ rarest and the world’s least understood creatures. On a quest to photograph red pandas, Debby learns about the threat of dogs to Himalayan wildlife and communities and reacts with a bold plan to save the Himalayan mutts, one dog at a time.

With her resolute team, Debby Ng is trying to make a difference for dogs, people, and the environment, by bringing modern and humane solutions to people and animals in the Himalaya. Join us as Debby shares how community engagement, education and social networking can transform human health, enhance animal welfare and save a fragile ecology.

Proudly hosted by NUS PEACE and NUS Toddycats!
Please register at http://tiny.cc/himalayanmutt

Click for the pdf20150202 Himalayan Mutt Project Poster

“Forget not our Living Forest” – botanist Joseph Lai unveils an entourage of enthralling forest denizens! Thu 17 Oct 2013: 6.30pm @ NUS LT25

I am really pleased to present this talk to students and staff of NUS, and friends from all over Singapore. The naturalist who treads the forest frequently, often alone and always with patience and delight in the ambience will have its secrets gradually unveiled to them over time. A careful curation of stories and photos are sometimes shared with the public and we have stopped doing this frequently over time.

This is one such precious occasion – Joseph Lai has prepared a feast for our eyes with hundreds of colourful images and stories. A passionate and artistic speaker, immerse yourself in the wonder of this very special heritage we which we have left in Singapore still and prepare to be surprised.

Raffles Museum Toddycats & Cicada Tree Eco-Place are pleased to present this free public talk:

Joelai“Forget Not Our Living Forest” by Joseph Lai, botanist

Thu 17 Oct 2013: 6.30pm – 8.00pm
Venue: Lecture Theatre 25, Faculty of Science, NUS (map)
All are welcome,
please register at:
tinyurl.com/livingforest-17oct2013

About the talk

Timeless and priceless beyond imagination, our living forest lives and breathes for us, providing us with a green lung and enriching our lives with a vessel of flora and fauna that is so intricately diverse and rich. Forget Not Our Living Forest seeks to reconnect us with, and re-energise our appreciation for the Central Catchment Nature Reserve, our natural heritage, set in the heart of our island.

Veteran botanist Joseph Lai will unravel the priceless denizens of the forest, carefully and painstakingly assembled from years of appreciative observations. Never before have you seen such an enthralling ensemble of forest denizens and feel the life of a living forest, uniquely near our doorstep in Singapore!

Mac21

Pangolin head5

Cyathea trichodesma

Heritiera elata1

Draco blkbeardedwings

Fungus

Halfbeak

Thanks to Joseph Lai for use of the images.

For more information, visit http://lovemacritchie.wordpress.com/forget-not-our-living-forest-talks

Originally posted on Otterman Speaks…

Thu 12 Sep 2013: 7.00pm Joseph Lai on “Forget Not Our Living Forest”

“Forget Not Our Living Forest”
By Joseph Lai, botanist

Thu 12 Sep 2013: 7.00pm – 9.00pm
Opp Stamford Pr Sch - Google Maps
At ecosystem, 3 Jalan Keledek, S(199259) – map

The talk is free, just register here.

About the talk – Timeless and priceless beyond imagination, our living forest lives and breathes for us, providing us with a green lung and enriching our lives with a vessel of flora and fauna that is so intricately diverse and rich.

Forget Not Our Living Forest seeks to reconnect us with, and re-energise our appreciation for the Central Catchment Nature Reserve, our natural heritage, set in the heart of our island. Come meet our forest’s enthralling ensemble of forest denizens and feel the life of a living forest not far from our doorstep.

FORGET NOT OUR LIVING FOREST - Talk on Thu 12 Sep 2013 at 7pm

For more information, visit http://lovemacritchie.wordpress.com