Creatures at Home: The nocturnal lives of Siglap’s civets

Our wild urban civets were featured in POSKOD, an online magazine that publishes articles on a diversity of Singapore-related topics such as culture, people and even spaces.

Urban civets featured on

If you haven’t read it yet, you can read the entire article here. This article introduces an area where urban common palm civets are frequently spotted, Siglap/Opera Estate and focuses on the fine line between co-existence and conflict. This was written by Amanda Fay Tan, one of the contributors of POSKOD who happened to live in the urban civet hotspot. She has lived in Siglap for over 20 years and it was only recently did she find out that there are wild civets in her neighbourhood.

Amanda writes

For me, the more important revelation is that Siglap has never been home to just us, nor have all the resident ‘cats’ I’ve seen been cats. The civet’s continued standing as the last and only urban wild carnivore in Singapore depends largely on whether as co-residents we accept them.”

That is exactly the message that we want to convey to residents who share their homes with civets.

The best part of the article was that after Amanda’s interview with us, I received a highly excited text message (with everything in CAPS) from Amanda that she just saw her first civet running out from underneath the car and disappearing up the stairs just outside her house. She recaps her experience in the article as well

The evening I spent learning from Weiting and Tze Kwan about the civets, I got home at about 11 p.m. As I was walking past my neighbour’s car, a furry, four-legged, dark-coloured animal dashed out from underneath. As it ran past me, its long tail was completely aligned with its body and stayed parallel to the ground as it darted up two flights of stairs, disappearing into the darkness. I was stunned. The very day I learnt all about civets was also the day of my first encounter with one – and, I hope, of more to come.”

Maybe it was pure coincidence or maybe the civets ‘knew’ when to time their appearance. Nonetheless, the first sighting of a civet will always be a special one, treasure them dearly!

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