Monday, December 15, 2008

St John's Island exploration

Some of the Semakau guides stayed overnight at St John's island the last weekend to try out some of their facilities for future events. December was the monsoon period and it rained heavily during the afternoon. Luckily it stopped just on time for us to visit a small patch of mangroves where the locally rare Avicennia marina was found (unfortunately my picture was too blurred).

Soldier Crab
After that, we walked along the intertidals to reach the rocky shores. Along the way, we sawan army of crabs scurrying along the mud. This is the first time I saw the soldier crabs, Dotilla myctiroides moving in such masses, as beach development had decline this crab's numbers that they are listed as vulnerable in our red data book.

There were lots of onch slugs on a pipe leading out to the sea.

The rocky shore is practically covered with sargassum and bryosis seaweeds. However, life can still be found here. Above is a video of a spider conch flipping itself over using its unique sickle-shaped operculum.

July with his keen-eye spotted this Phyllidiella pustulosa nudibranch.

There were also lots of blue coral (Heliopora sp.) near the reef edge

Someone spotted this magnificant juvenile blue spotted fan-tailed ray lying lazily on the sand.

Two brain corals which often confused me. Lobophyllia sp. with its deep gorges between the ridges;

and Symphillia sp.

Sea poison
Nearer to the night, Robert found this flowering sea poison (Barringtonia asiatica).

The next morning when we were at the jetty ready to depart the island, we saw that the high spring tide had raise so high that it was overflowing the concrete banks.

1 comment:

Manoj said...

Haven't been to St. Johns Island for ages. Great work!

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