Saturday, February 24, 2007

Getting HIGH at CJ

Went back to Chek Jawa for the very first real TeamSeagrass transect
The boardwalk is nearing completion and the stench is gone!
Marine life there is slowly recovering though and I'll show you how in a moment
This is how CJ is looking now

Was too busy doing the recording for the transect so didn't take much pics
This was actually found by Jing Kai
Wonder what it is?

Ok, I said I'd show how life is coming back to CJ
It all started with this marvellous creature, the hairy seahare B. leachii

Check out the blue ocilli (eyespots) of the seahare

Don't they just make you go "Awww.."

They sort of crunches into a ball when you touch them
I think they're supposed to ink up when disturbed but I guess they are too busy with the business that's going on....

This is the main attraction of the trip and lo and behold, its seahare erm... procreation day!!

They were doing it in corners, finding a cosy spot to exchange the gift of life

They're also doing it in pools of water


And everyone's into the action too
Here's Helen getting down and dirty in the mud

And who can forget Alvin
I wonder whether the seahares feel uncomfortable with such a huge video camera filming them going their business haha

On the way back to the meeting point, I saw this big green carpet anemone
So much different from the dead and dying ones few weeks back

Jing Kai found this big hermit crab too

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Kusu smuchsu

Off to Kusu Island today with the Beachfleas people (sorry for the confusion just now Ria)
Everyone was fast and once they settled in the hut, the filming crew went off with their gears and the others set out to the shore.
Tiong Chin was very fast and before I could even step onto the sand, he was already out in the waters snapping away.

Anyway, here's something interesting I found
At first I thought it was a starfish until I grabbed in and it was just a pile of sand

Ron did manage to find a couple of starfishes (Archaster typicus) though

This one had a blue mouth!

Close up of a healthy carpet anemone
Yum yum, makes me think of honeydew sago

I'm really glad to see big healthy carpet anemones
Our hunt for the clownfishes carries on...

While Ron and his friends were scouring the waters for clownfishes, I chanced upon this little fella
A lone tube anemone on the vast shore (Cerianthus sp.)

Here's another anemone I found
Had almost stepped on it because its so well camouflaged

Close up of the blue tips of this stony coral
They're scattered sparsely on the shore amongst the big brain corals

One of the many brain corals around
Hmm if only my brain was this size....

A colony of Montipora sp. which was amongst the secluded bunch of them
They were just beside the coral rubble (which probably be made up of the montis)
I even saw a small fragment which grew from a broken branch but the water was too murky for a pic

Here's the coral rubble
I wonder what happened to the corals that once used to thrive here

Again, I spotted this mysterious gooey stuff around the seagrass
Here's one for you Siti

And for the final shot, look who's lookin'

P.S. I'm a flash hater so pardon me for not taking night photos
Maybe I will when I get my hands on a DSLR :)

Sunday, February 4, 2007

Pics from Tuas transect!!

Here are some of the stuff I took photos of during the transect
Hope you like it!

This is of a crab I found under a rock while trying to take a pic of Halimeda sp.

This is a tunicate or what is commonly called "Sea Squirt" as they literally squirt water at you when you take them out of water :)

This is a sponge (Porifera sp.) exposed to the air in low tide
Not sure whether they survive this though as most sponges cannot be exposed to air because the air bubbles trapped in their pores will cause the sponge cells to die off

Not everybody is social on the shore...
This lone bugger just wants to be by itself

These are mollusc egg cases I presume
Quite a few around the place

This polyp (Palythoa sp.) seems to have its space invaded
Kok Sheng and I were trying to figure out what that slimy thing is. I guessed it was a type of sponge but he thought otherwise. Till now we're still making our guesses haha

This is the soft coral Dendronephthea sp.
Its about the size of a soccer ball to put things in perspective

Here's what it looks like inside the big white brocolli

Ahha here's the "onch" which caused quite a commotion
Ria was like "I don't care how big it is. Its an onch!"
Kinda scary looking huh

More Palythoa sp. on a rock. I saw my first small colony of these guys and was so happy until I continued walking on and got to know that they are everywhere!!

And being part of TeamSeagrass, how can I miss the main focus
Our dear old Halophila ovalis

Came across this when checking out the site with Kok Sheng. Is this a cause for concern?

And finally, a view of the Tuas shoreline with the volunteers at work

I'll try to post the rest of the pictures tomorrow
Till then,
God Bless