Sunday, February 24, 2008

Semakau Inter-tidal Walk on 23 February 2008

Today is the first tidal walk of the new season. We have quite a big group of 60+ passengers onboard of this nice cruiser. This new boat provide a better environment for interaction between fellow participants and the guides.
To go to the inter-tidal area, we need to pass through a secondary forest. Not far from the entrance, we saw this grape-like fruits. I didn't know we have grapes in Singapore.
Saw this probably a big coachwhip ray (Himantura uarnak) stay motionless. Upon checking, found that is dead and the body has started to decompose.
This gave us a good chance to look at their lethar weapon that stingray use for their defense. (tips: never walk or step onto the seagrass area or when the water is too high that you can see the bottom. Another alternative is follow a experience guide.)
On one of the rock surface, we saw lots of sea slug (Oncidium Sp.) crawling. During high tide, they breath through trapped air under the rocks. As their colour usually matches with the rock surface, you will need to look carefully in order to spot them.
I saw this very rare heart shape cockle (Corculum sp.) Just look at the peraly white shell. Isn't it beautiful?
Ooh! The underside is really like a heart in red too!
We saw this reef eelnear the sea grass lagoon.
Yes. The iconic big sea star - a knobbly sea star (Protoreaster nodosus) One of the group posing with the Star of Semakau.
Also very close with the sea star (both echinoderms phylum, means spiny skin in Greek) a sea cucumber. This is a sypnatid (probably a Polyplectana kefersteinii) with the feeding tentacles out for feeding.
Saw another big Ocellated sea cucumber (Stichopus ocellatus) identified by its distinctive 'eyespots'.
At the coral rubble area, we saw this polka dot (Jorunna funebris) nudibranch.
Another green nudibranch (Ceratosoma sinuata) and lots of orange Gymmodoris rublopabulosa nudibranch.We also saw quite a few flatworm (different from a nudibranch, they don't have exposed gills as the nudibranch)
Another flat wormThis is giant clam (Tridacna squamosa) is getting very rare in Singapore.A very beautiful Fann Wong....oops! Is fan worm in white!And out of no where, I saw this Arcopora corals in white. Bleaching?And on the list, there are many interesting creatures that we saw... Indeed a very fruitful trip!

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