Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Otters, octopus and more on Northern Expedition Day 2

Day 2 of the Northern Expedition got off to a great start as Jerome spots otters at Punggol Jetty on the way to Pulau Ubin!
Shared by Jerome Pang on facebook.
Today, there was dredging, and field trips to Tuas, Chek Jawa and Pulau Ubin. Here's a glimpse of some happenings.

Seems like the morning dredge found some interesting creatures. Here's Dr Tan deciphering a curious mollusc with the awesome equipment that is found at the lab set up for the Expedition.
Shared by RMBR on facebook.
 There was also an octopus!
Shared by RMBR on facebook.
Jerome shared more photos of his day at the Expedition. Looks like there's lots of work sorting out the dredge and other field trips in the morning. Also a glimpse of the fabulous Outward Bound Singapore facilities and seems like they had a great lunch.
Shared by Jerome Pang on facebook.
I missed all the morning fun and only joined the team for the field trip at Tuas later in the evening. Fortunately, we didn't get rained on, and the team has a very productive trip. It was also lovely to meet Sheryl who leads the volunteers from Merck in monitoring the seagrasses on this shore as part of TeamSeagrass.
 Mei Lin is giving a happy sign. On the horizon is the Merawang Beacon which some of the team explored. In the far distance is Pulau Merambong which belongs to Malaysia. Prof Daphne in yellow is already hard at work looking for anemones. She found a little sponge crab (Family Dromiidae) carrying a Ball soft coral (Family Neptheidae)! I've never seen this behaviour before.
Under the rocks, I found a small batch of cephalopod eggs with the tiny babies visible inside the egg capsules!
 A large octopus was pretending to be a rock!
Hurray, we found many of these beautiful Glass anemones (Doflenia sp.). We also saw some other small anemones and one strange one tucked inside coral rubble. Also, a Giant carpet anemone (Stichodactyla gigantea) with a 'Nemo' in it! Mei Lin saw a nice Snaky sea anemone (Macrodactyla doreensis).
As usual, we learn a lot during a field trip with Prof Daphne as she patiently explains these wondrous anemones.
Tuas is a wonderland of amazing colourful animals. Chay Hoon was helping Dr Kathe Jensen and they found lots of slugs. Mei Lin found many sea fans. I didn't have time to look closely at what everyone found, or take photos of even what I found. It's hard to collect and photograph at the same time. Here's some nicer photos of Tuas taken on trips I've made in the past.
Meanwhile, other teams were working on Chek Jawa and another part of Pulau Ubin. Thanks to Ivan Kwan, who live tweeted photos and comments (#MegaMarine), we have a glimpse of what happened! It seems some of the team worked the area outside the fence on Pulau Ubin.
Shared by Ivan Kwan on twitter.
From Chek Jawa, a pair of snapping shrimp and shrimp goby! These two different animals live together and help one another out. More details here.
Shared by Ivan Kwan on twitter.
Ivan also gives us a glimpse of the work stations at Expedition Base Camp.
Shared by Ivan Kwan on twitter.
You can view live tweets #MegaMarine on this blog (see the right panel)

It's going to be a challenge to keep up blogging the many activities going on at the same time! But hopefully, more participants will share on facebook or blog about their adventures. I'll add links to these on the blog as well as post them on the Mega Marine Survey facebook page which should generally have the latest  updates.

Tomorrow, MORE adventures on our northern shores. I'm joining the team heading out for Pulau Sekudu in the evening.

Posts by others of Day 2 of the expedition

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