Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Pandan mangroves (30 Mar 2011)

A very small team of volunteers gathered to find out what is in the mud at the Pandan mangroves on a blue-sky weekday.
The mud is very soft here!

The narrow slice of Pandan mangroves lies at the edge of a major road, Jalan Buroh, with a bridge over Sungei Pandan. The seaward side of Sungei Pandan is taken up by shipyards and other shipping work. The yellow arrow shows where we worked today.
The mangroves seem large though, when we are knee deep in soft mud!
After a briefing by Dr Tan Koh Siang from the Tropical Marine Science Institute (TMSI), we head out for the survey area. As usual, the line is laid near running water so that it's easier to wash off the mud in the sieve to find the tiny creatures that live here.
The mud is really REALLY soft! But some of the volunteers have quickly reached the line and are all ready to start!
Here's a clip of us getting started, and finishing the survey. It's hot work trudging around in the soft mud!
As usual, at the end of the trip, we eagerly await to hear from Dr Tan about what we have found.
Even before we began, we noticed weird blobs of jelly all over the mud. Dr Tan says they are probably the eggs of some kind of slug!
Andy shared this video clip of the blobs with tiny creatures stuck in them.
Here's a clip of his explanation of the dominant creatures that we found in the mud.
Other finds include a baby scorpionfish, horseshoe crabs and all kinds of clams and snails. Rene and Andy took photos on this trip (while I dug around in the mud), so we'll have a look at their photos soon.

We forgot to take a group photo before we got totally muddy. Despite the hot weather, nasty soft mud, seems like everyone had a great time!
Jonathan, who looks after the volunteers at the Survey, is as usual busy taking care of everyone and hauling huge piles of equipment.
Bian gives a much needed hand to us as we heave out of the mud at the end of the trip.
The Singapore Rowing Association that is located near the mangroves have kindly allowed us to use their facilities to wash up. And we sure do need a good wash up!
Bravo to all the volunteers who turned up for this first survey of Pandan mangroves mudflat!

The video clips were taken with the awesome FLIP video camera kindly supplied by Shaun Quek of Cisco through the introduction of fellow volunteer Sam Yeo.

Other posts about this trip
  • Ria with jelly blobs and horseshoe crabs.
  • Rene on facebook with lots of photos of the volunteers at work and some of the creatures we found: baby scorpionfish, crabs, snails, horseshoe crabs and more!

There's more work to be done after the field session, to process, sort and identify all these fascinating creatures. Look out for more news on how you can help out in this as well.

Upcoming trips for the rest of the year have been announced on the mailing list for registered volunteers. Exciting destinations include Mandai mangroves and Lim Chu Kang mangroves.

To join us, register your interest in this form and you'll be invited to join the mailing list to receive updates on the Survey and sign up for Survey activities.

Also check out our FAQs for more about the Survey.

To find out more about our common mangrove wildlife, check out the online Guide to the Mangroves of Singapore and the wildsingapore wild fact sheets.

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