The Gardens By The Bay South, Singapore’s latest iconic landmark and destination, attracted many local and international visitors. It was officially opened on 28/06/2012 and I was there to be part of the official opening event. Prior to that, I was also given the opportunity to visit and photograph parts of the Gardens By The Bay South when she was in the final phase of her construction and one of my photographs was selected for the official opening and roving photography exhibition around Singapore.
I had been back there a few times and it was great to see the second phase of the Gardens By The Bay South completion finishing soon, making the connectivity to Marina Barrage and Gardens By The Bay East fully connected. Take a look at the map of Gardens By The Bay South here; you can see that there is a lake called the Kingfisher Lake and the eating area known as Satay By The Bay. The Kingfisher lake area is nearing completion while Satay By The Bay is already opened and receiving visitors to their food haven.
This area recently became a new and popular spot for birding photographers, partly due to the arrival of a single female Daurian Redstart that is neither a resident bird nor a migrant bird into Singapore. This is a first time that the Daurian Redstart is being sighted and reported in Singapore! It’s pretty amazing that a bird that is native to temperate countries such as Taiwan and Japan flew down to Singapore and chose to reside at Gardens By The Bay South, right in the area of Satay By The Bay and Kingfisher Lake area. The Daurian Redstart was a “star attraction” and attracted a number of bird photographers flocking down to Satay By The Bay to photograph her presence in Singapore. The number of photographs and mentions about this star attraction bird and her location helped to rally more bird photographers down to Gardens By The Bay area for bird photography. Thus, this made Gardens By The Bay a new place for bird photographers in Singapore.
Besides this special star bird, the Daurian Redstart, there were other bird species spotted in the area of Satay By The Bay and Kingfisher Lake. Some of the bird species spotted are –
- Whistling Duck
- Collared Kingfisher
- Yellow Bittern
- White-Breasted Waterhen and her young chicks
- Olive-Backed Sunbird
- Pink-Necked Green Pigeon
- Black-Headed Munia
- Brahminy Kite (it’s the unofficial resident bird of Marina Bay, quite easily spotted flying above the Bay area)
Considering that Gardens By The Bay South was first and foremost never a natural land/nature park area, the Marina South area whereby the Gardens By The Bay is located is built on reclaimed land. She received her fair share of both praises and criticisms. Personally, I would like to give credit where it is due and highlight that Gardens By The Bay South had transformed into a new nature sector with her trees, flora and fauna, thus attracting different bird species to reside in the area. While the numbers may not be many and plentiful yet, the arrival of different bird species is a testimonial to how an artificial location can be transformed and attracts wildlife (different species of birds into the area).
I would love to go back again and photograph the area around Satay By The Bay and Kingfisher Lake, hoping to discover more bird species residing around Gardens By The Bay South and Gardens By The Bay East. Some raptors in the sky above Gardens By The Bay and Marina Bay area had been spotted and photographed, I would love to capture them in action and share which of the raptors were there in flying action.
Besides being a great place for photography (wildlife, landscape), it’s a great place to relax by the Marina Bay, enjoying the breeze, peace and tranquility. It’s definitely an ideal venue for running, walking, picnic and family activities time there. I like to hang out by the water body with the trees, flora and fauna around it such as Marina Bay and Gardens By The Bay. The Marina Bay area does have her leisure and outdoor recreational sectors that complements the business, offices and retail sectors, with the Gardens By The Bay South.