Tuesday, March 17, 2009

15 March Semakau Public Walk

It has been a long time since I last guided at Pulau Semakau since I am usually the coordinator for the walk. It felt good to once again getting down to lead participants to show our diverse marine life in the intertidals.

Having missed out the Knobbly Seastar (Protoreaster nodosus) last time, the hunterseekers, Helen and LK found a juvenile one just right after the seagrass meadow. Another name for it is the chocolate chip seastar, which to me seemed like the Toblerone chocolate which the knobs jutting out.

And here is the my group the Pufferfish with the knobbly.

Hairy crabs (Pilumnus vespertilio) are one of the most common crabs in the intertidal zone. Even though they looked adorable, they are known predators of snails, bristleworms and even slugs.

As we head out to the seafish minefield, we saw that many of these common seastars (Archaster typicus) were paired together, one on top of the other. Because they practise external fertilisation, being so close to each other increase the likelyhood of insemination.

We managed to find one that is not paired and examined the underside. To our surprise, jelly like bobs were extended out from the mouth area. I have seen the green stomach of this seastar before, so this is unlikely to be that. So what could these things be?

We also saw many nudibranch along the way, including this Ceratosoma sinuatum.

We were really lucky today to see a live bombing exercise at one of the three military islands, Pulau Senang (if I did not recall wrongly). This is in fact, my first time seeing it, after repeating it so many times from my script.

As usual, a lack of photos whenever I am guiding, but it was a nice day with good discoveries with a fun loving group of participants.

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