Best of our wild blogs: 12 Nov 18

2 Dec (Sun): Let’s Act on the Singapore Blue Plan 2018!
wild shores of singapore

Wild fun for kids during the December school holidays!
wild shores of singapore

Butterfly Anatomy : Part 3
Butterflies of Singapore

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Singapore works to tackle threats to food supply

Researchers studying how to develop rice that is more resistant to effects of climate change
Jose Hong Straits Times 11 Nov 18;

Rice plants stand in rows of pots, some stained yellow with fungus infections, others wilting after days without water.

Before The Sunday Times entered the greenhouse, rice researcher Rapee Heebkaew handed over white lab coats and plastic bags to place over shoes. "Wear this," she said. "You'll be fine from whatever's in there, but we need to protect the rice plants from you."

This is the Singapore greenhouse of Germany's pharmaceutical and life sciences giant Bayer, where Ms Heebkaew develops ways to make rice more resistant to rice blast fungus, a devastating infection that annually destroys so much rice that could have fed millions, and will only spread and worsen with climate change.

Since Bayer began operating its seeds laboratory in 2008, it has tested 12 rice varieties that are relatively resistant to the negative effects of climate change.

Though Singapore imports more than 90 per cent of its food, this is among its efforts to help a warming world.

Even local outfits are working on rice resilience.

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