Take a peek at how the zoo takes care of animals

SINGAPORE - Ribena for chimpanzees, honeydew for polar bears, fresh milk for anteaters - these are a few of the quirky foods enjoyed by animals at the Singapore Zoo.

Visitors can learn why keepers feed them the snacks, and more, at the zoo's Animals In The Pink! educational tour later this month.

Visitors will be shown around the zoo's central kitchen and its animal hospital, the Wildlife Research and Healthcare Centre.

Along the way, they will also learn about things like animal dentistry and the hospital's forays into using traditional Chinese medicine practices, such as acupuncture, to treat its patients.

The zoo has been conducting these tours for more than 10 years - mainly for school groups and organisations.

Since 2011, it has been offering them to the public in partnership with the Science Centre Singapore during the Science Festival.

"This is one of the programmes which we think adds value to the Singapore Science Festival. It links to natural history, there's a lot of science which goes behind taking care of animals," said Ms May Lok, director for education at Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS), which runs the zoo.

"We realised that people are very curious about what goes on behind the scenes. We hope visitors will get to know how we take care of the animals and the amount of work that goes into it. This gives them another perspective to their zoo visit."

The tour is open to all ages and is pitched at different levels depending on the age of the group.

Two hour-long tours will be conducted on July23 at 10am and 2pm.

A minimum of five people are needed to run the tour, with a maximum of 30. Members of the public need to register for the tour, which costs $18 for children and $25 for those 13 and above.

To register, e-mail Mr Haniman Boniran at haniman.b@wrs.com.sg.

For more information, visit the Wildlife Reserve Singapore's education programmes site at education.zoo.com.sg