NParks clarifies that they did not claim peacock owners not at fault, investigations ongoing

When AVS visited on Dec. 2, the peacock was caged in an enclosure.

Zi Shan Kow | December 03, 2021, 01:40 PM

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NParks has issued a statement regarding the recent attack of a pet peacock on a three-year-old girl.

The girl underwent general anaesthesia and was left with a 3cm stitch on her face after she was attacked by a household peacock that charged out of its owners' home near Serangoon Gardens.

Investigation underway

NParks is currently investigating the case of the peacock attack near Serangoon Gardens, said Jessica Kwok, group director of community animal management at Animal and Veterinary Service (AVS).

In response to Mothership's queries, Kwok also clarified that AVS did not inform the owners that they are not at fault, as investigations are ongoing.

On Dec. 1, the child's mother wrote that the owners were unapologetic, and had consulted their lawyers as well as AVS, who "all agreed it's NOT THEIR FAULT".

Kwok also said that AVS visited the owners' home on Dec. 2, "observed that the peacock was caged in an enclosure, and have directed the owners that the bird is not allowed to roam outside its premises."

The Straits Times reported that the household peacock was often spotted on the road outside its home, as its owner would leave their gate open.

"We are aware of the August 2020 incident and will take it into consideration as part of our investigation," Kwok added.

Other peacock attacks

The child's mother, Kris Chan, shared on Dec. 2 that her daughter's experience was not an isolated incident.

In fact, "several people" had come forward with similar stories of being attacked by a peacock from the same household, she wrote.

In 2020, a female victim lodged a police report and contacted AVS after suffering a 1cm laceration on her face.

But "apparently nothing much came out of it at all", said Chan.

Chan is appealing for more victims to come forward.

Are pet peacocks allowed in Singapore?

While members of the public are allowed to keep non-commercial poultry as pets, owners can only keep a maximum of 10 of such animals, said Kwok.

These include chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, quails, partridges, pheasants, domestic pigeons, guinea fowl, swans and peacocks.

Kwok said that there are certain guidelines for keeping these animals as pets:

"These pets must be kept in a bird-proof cage, house or enclosure that consists of a fine wire mesh netting capable of preventing any contact with any bird, poultry or animal from outside the cage, house or enclosure; and a proper roof capable of preventing droppings, waste, feathers and other particles from any bird, poultry or animal from entering the cage, house or enclosure."

The offence for failing to comply with the Animals and Birds (Prevention of Avian Disease in Non-Commercial Poultry) Rules, can be a fine of up to S$10,000 and/or an imprisonment term of up to 12 months.

Top image by Mandy How and Kris Chan.