Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum

Kranji Marshes


Located by the western banks of the Kranji Reservoir and south of the Kranji Sanctuary Golf Course, the Kranji Marshes is a unique freshwater marsh in northern Singapore with an estimated area of 39 ha. The Kranji Reservoir was completed in May 1975, through the damming of the mouth of the Kranji River. As a result of the damming, the original tidal and mangrove habitat around the river was flooded with freshwater, resulting in the formation of a freshwater marshland, known now as the Kranji Marshes. This marsh is currently designated as a Nature Park under the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) of Singapore and it is adopted by the Nature Society of Singapore in 2008 under the ABC Waters Programme of the PUB (Public Utilities Board).

In this unique wetland flooded in shallow water and dominated by grasses and sedges, many organisms associated to freshwater and open country habitats thrive here, including reptiles, amphibians and plants that are well-adapted to water-logged conditions. In particular, the Kranji Marshes has become a favourite spot among birdwatchers. Common avian species seen here include the Purple Heron (Ardea purpurea), the Cinnamon Bittern (Ixobrychus cinnamomeus), the Rusty-breasted Cuckoo (Cacomantis sepulcralis), the Grey Heron (Ardea cinerea), and the Baya Weaver (Ploceus philippinus). The Purple Swamphen (Porphyrio porphyrio), the Red-wattled Lapwing (Vanellus indicus), and the Cotton Pygmy Goose (Nettapus coromandelianus) are among a few of the interesting wildlife one can find in this rural piece of land.

As for plant life, the Water Lily (Nymphaea sp.) and the Water Banana (Ludwigia adscendens) are commonly seen in deeper pools whereas the Yellow Burhead (Limnocharis flava) can be found in shallower pools. On drier but soggy soils, ferns like the Akar Paku (Stenochlaena palustris) thrive. Indian Cherry (Muntingia calaburia), on the other hand, can be found on drier, poorer soils.The presence of Nipah palms (Nypa fruticans) hints of the marshes past as a mangrove habitat.

Getting there

To get to the Kranji Reservoir (off Kranji Way), one would have to take bus service 925 from the Kranji MRT Station. The marshes is only accessible on foot. For those who are driving, one can drive to Neo Tiew Lane 1 and then walk in.

Other Resources

Nature Watch. Kranji Bund Marshes. http://habitatnews.nus.edu.sg/pub/naturewatch/text/a102a.htm. (Accessed December 2011).

Happenings at the Kranji Marsh. http://kranjimarsh.blogspot.com/. (Accessed December 2011).

Nature Society (Singapore). Kranji Reservoir (Marsh) Adoption. http://www.nss.org.sg/project.aspx?id=2. (Accessed December 2011).


Quek, B. S., H. H. Ng, H. T. W. Tan & P. K. L. Ng, 2011. The History of Singapore's Reservoirs. Pp. 59-61. In: Ng, P. K. L., R. T. Corlett & H. T. W. Tan (editors), Singapore Biodiversity. An Encyclopedia of the Natural Environment and Sustainable Development, Editions Didier Millet, Singapore, 552 pp.

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