Sunday, May 20, 2007

Aftermath of Chek Jawa 1

My 3rd consecutive intertidal trip today...woa, its kinda fun though extremely tiring and takes up the remainder of my time (resting). Need to start reading up on my own honours project lao after this trips.

Today went to help out kok sheng in his UROPS project (on Chek Jawa) with Mr Siva as his supervisor. Managed to take the first bus to Changi, phew...thanx to kok sheng for pushing back the time or have to take cabby again.

The far left end of Changi Beach is lined with seagrasses. Worth to explore the next time.

Upon reaching Ubin we scrambled to our allocated bikes arranged by Nparks and cycled quickly to CJ. Woa...this is really a hell ride for me man. Never knew my leg muscles are so weak one. Soo exhausted when I reach CJ.

We went over to the coral rubble and found Ron and other CJ volunteers there, who were already exploring since 5 plus (we reached almost 8am).

Just in time to see them found a Melo melo. If i recalled correctly, it is also called the Bailer shell cos pple use to use these shells to bail water out of their boats. [Edit] Mmm, sorry a mistake, this is supposed to be the noble volute also =_+

Ron also showed us 2 stranded Copperband butterflyfishes. Apparently they were trapped in a bubu (fish cage).

They have a false eye at its tail end and its real eye is hidden by a copper band running across it. It was said that this will enable the predator to bit at the wrong end at the tail, thus allowing the fish to escape with minor injuries. For predators that prey from behind, they will be tricked to approach from its "rear" end, which is actually the front, thus allowing the fish to detect this danger and escape, spoiling the element of surprise

A red cowrie on a sea fan which I will surely miss if Chay Hoon didnt tell me about this. Can tell me its ID again? srry for my lack of memory.

kok sheng's focus is on carpet anemones since thats what his project is on. There were soooo many carpets at the other half of CJ! Looks like the rainy period did not affect this area.

Huge carpets, first time seeing such big ones. Must be older than me.

And more...

And more!

And there were also many peacock anemones around around CJ. Such a variety of colors!



And seemingly glowing green ones too.

I spotted this small little fish inside a puddle, about 3-4cm. Is this a toadfish, but I never seen such a small one before. As I flipped over the rock in that same puddle, I found a toadfish, this time im much sure with its big mouth and eyes and bigger size. So is that one above a baby?

Lots of ball sea cucumbers buried in the sand, I even found some at the northern sand bar. Btw, the part with exudes water is its anus right Ron?

Found four such sea stars during our exploration. Are they the biscuit seastars?

Slipper limpets hiding inside a Melo melo shell. These so-called limpets are actually not related to limpets (they just look like them). The interesting thing about it is that they stack on top of each other. The younger ones are males and when they get older, they will change their sex to females (aka protandrus hermaphrodites). Hence, the bottom most ones are the females and the upper most ones are the males.

The fearsome thundercrab, though I find it rather adorable nowadays. Learnt from the boatmen of my lab that they are actually edible, but only its pincers. Yup, some of my older labmates had sampled and survived so its probably true.

A bivalve with its siphon extended. It is actually sorta the feeding and breathing aparatus for the animal where water containing food and O2 is transport in and filtered.

Kok sheng hard at work

A crab covered with so many sand particles, algae and barnacles that I cant even ID it.

A close relative of Melo melo, the noble volute, with its attractive moutain designs on its shell.

Guess what we found?? A dead naked hermit crab! Yes yes, this is what will happen when u take the pretty shell home to display and rot there. Why not leave it where it is and let the hermit crabs have a home? Else they will all turned up like this.

Mass orgy of hermit crabs. Fighting for shells perhaps? Yes, another reminder not to take shells home or this will occur.

Exploring aside, we also went hunting abt the northern side of CJ for carpets for kok sheng's project, but only found a pitiful few. Nearly dehyrated there, tml tink will bring 2 waterbottles instead of one. And we dragged our tired bodies back to the jetty, braving those up-sloped roads again.

Back at the hawker centre, I found this signboard from a seafood stall. Hey we can all find them in our beautiful Singapore shores! (Stingray, sotong, Gonggong, prawn, chilli crab, mussels, cockles, flower crab and grouper fish)


tHE tiDE cHAsER said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tHE tiDE cHAsER said...

Eh... the first snail is also a noble volute. A melo melo's shell and foot has different patterns compared with the noble volute. In fact, even the one with the hermit crab is a noble volute shell. Yah, the end of the sea cucumber which squirts water is the anus.

Siyang said...

opps okies. :)

tHE tiDE cHAsER said...

btw, the butterflyfishes were actually rescued from a bubu. There were like at least 7 or 8 of them inside when I found them, and one of them was a kite butterflyfish while the rest copperbanded. Sigh... too bad I forgot to bring my camera...

Siyang said...

The fish cage? Why is it called bubu btw?

And wow! So many? Yalo, y no camera :P

ria said...

Wow! Looks like you all had a great outing on Chek Jawa!

Yes, Ron is right. All the volutes you saw were Noble volutes.

The Bailer volute (Melo melo) has a striped body. It's just as handsome as the Noble though. Here's a photo of the Melo melo

CH said...

Hi Siyang,

that would be an allied cowry or ovulid snail.

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