Jun 27 2015
Two days ago, we unexpectedly spent almost three hours at the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum. I was so relieved that Z liked it, since it’s not the easiest museum to get to, and admission fees apply even for three year olds. I was also struck by all the beauty that we encountered, especially in the insect section. Insects don’t survive long enough in my home for me to take a good look at them!
We bought our tickets at the door, although I’ve read posts that advised otherwise or said tickets weren’t sold on site. Admission rates are listed here; the site lists session timings, but we weren’t aware of it and weren’t told at the ticketing counter that we had to leave by a certain time, so perhaps they’ve relaxed the rules a little.
This post by Life’s Tiny Miracles has lovely pictures of what you can expect to see at the museum. (Unlike what was mentioned in the post, I did wish I’d brought my jacket, and there are washrooms within the museum, on the second floor. Also, they’ve fixed the washroom break problem by having attendants help with re-entry, if you should want to use the washroom on the first floor, outside the museum and next to the souvenir store.)
Compared to the museum brochure, this old ST article gives you a better idea of what each of the zones are about.
Follow this link to download a museum activity sheet for kids.
And here’s my tip for getting more out of your visit: I found it impossible to remember much of what I saw, so I snapped pictures of anything that fascinated me, along with the descriptions.
Butterflies and moths fall under the Lepidoptera order of insects; “Lepidoptera” means “scaled wings.” These insects have four wings covered with tiny overlapping scales. ↑
The Atlas Moth (36) has the largest wing surface area of any living moth, and is named for the fact that its wing patterns resemble a map. ↑
The Empress Cicada is the largest cicada on Earth, and its total wingspan can measure over 20cm long. ↑
Beetles belong to the Coleoptera group; the name comes from the Greek words “koleos” and “ptera,” meaning “sheathed wings.” (I’m not sure if there was a more specific name provided for these long-horned beetles.) ↑
Jewel beetles are popular for their shiny colours; some of the larger species are used by traditional cultures for jewellery. ↑
Green Leaf Mimic Katydid. ↑
Javanese Leaf Insect. ↑
“Amphibian” means “double life.” ↑
While some frog species begin life as miniature versions of adult frogs, most undergo the cycle of tadpole to tail-less adult. The picture shows the life cycle of a Four-Lined Tree Frog. ↑
The Tokay Gecko can be located by its call, which sounds like “tock, tock, tock-eh.” ↑
Crocodile Newt, from Myanmar. ↑
Gold-ringed Cat Snake (left); Rainbow Tree Snake (right). ↑
Pencil urchins are sea urchins with spines that resemble pencils. ↑
Adult and juvenile mangrove horseshoe crabs (3); Coastal horseshoe crab (4). ↑
“Mollusc” means “soft.” Molluscs are soft-bodied invertebrates (animals without backbones). Most molluscs have shells to protect them. Pictured are the halved shells of a fossil nautilus (left:exterior, right:interior). ↑
Tigers are the largest carnivores known to have lived in Singapore. They were common in Singapore in the 1800s, and in 1843, it was estimated that local tigers killed over 300 people annually. They were eventually hunted into extinction, and the last local tiger is believed to have been shot in the early 1930s, in Choa Chu Kang. ↑
Green Broadbill. ↑
Red-crowned Barbet from Borneo, Malaysia. ↑