‘Hawker centre’ for butterflies: Sentosa’s new green corridor to grow native biodiversity

Asked how the population of butterflies is expected to grow, Mr Khew likened the corridor to a “hawker centre” for butterflies.

“Butterflies are like people, it’s like Sentosa just opened a hawker centre, there’s food (flowers). And what happens when a new hawker centre opens in Singapore? More people come because of more food options and an ideal environment,” he said.

However, he added: “Mother Nature is unpredictable, we cannot guarantee a specific number of butterflies, but by creating a corridor, it will attract them for the growth of their population and the continuation of their species.”

Ms Thien highlighted that the butterfly corridor, while targeted at butterflies, also benefits the native wildlife on Sentosa, such as moths, birds and mammals.

Speaking to The Straits Times, Mr Khew said that the local butterfly population has declined due to the destruction of habitats from the 1960s to 1990s. Unable to travel across the fragmented areas, the butterflies start to in-breed, and eventually die off.

Mr Khew added that butterfly caterpillars are very finicky about the plants they consume; without specific plants, they will run out of food sources and die.

Ms Grace Lee, director of environmental management who worked on the butterfly-corridor project, said the corridor is focused on biodiversity rather than tourism. 

By giving the butterflies a bigger playground to thrive in, she hopes to spread the population to other parts of Sentosa, and, hopefully, the mainland. 

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