Friday, August 28, 2009

Rain out at Changi Beach

Last Sunday, during another of my guided walks, I was cursed and blessed at the same time. Cursed because it had been raining (again) from 2am to about 6am. Blessed because 6am was the time when we started off with our guided walk.


I was glad to find a Horned Ghost Crab (Ocypode ceratophthalmus) after missing it the other time. They are scavengers and fierce predators at the same time, whereby it is known to pick off sea creatures, even baby turtles!


We found several Chitons crawling on an empty gong gong shell. These animals are protected by eight overlapping plates and this arrangement allowed them to curl into a ball when pried off the surface.


Here is a strange looking crab with very long antennae that I have never seen before. Could this be a kind of spider crab? Update: Just received info from CH that this is a masked burrowing crab (Family Corystidae). Budak also mentioned previously in his blog that the antennae were used to form a breathing tube when it is buried in the sand. Interesting new find for me!


I was glad to find the leopard sea cucumber (Holothuria ocellata) again. This burrowing cucumber have been recorded to be found at depths of 80m!


Under a long piece of plank, there was a big Swimming Crab (Family Portunidae) that had a broken claw. Fortunately, it can regenerate back the piece of limb after the next moulting.


Even though we did not manage to see the Sea Urchins again (sorry Mel), we were instead rewarded with another Echinoderm, the Cake Sea Star (Anthenea aspera)! This star is listed as vulnerable in our Singapore Red List.

Just as we were washing our feet, some anglers came by with a huge catch; an enormous stingray!


Though I forgot to take some pictures of my participants, I was lucky to get a snapshot of one of them at Changi Village where we had our breakfast.

Thanks to Sean for the photos of the chiton and sea cucumber.


CH said...

The strange looking crab is a Masked burrowing crab.

More info here

Simel Lem said...

that crab is the greatest!!! ^___^

Anonymous said...

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