Sunday, August 03, 2008

Exploring Semakau

Today, we were back at Semakau Landfill, exploring a part of the island that we seldom visit. It was indeed a very fulfilling trip, and we saw lots of interesting stuff :)

For me, the find of the day must be this:

An eight-armed sea star (Luidia maculata)! So far, I've only seen this on our northern shores, but never on our southern shores before! This sea star supposedly feed on other sea stars!

Am rushing for a flight later, so will just do a quick listing of some of the interesting things we saw:

As usual, there were lots of sand-sifting sea star (Archaster typicus).

We were quite excited to find 2 juvenile knobbly sea stars (Protoreaster nodosus).

Here's another one.

We also found 2 crown sea stars (Asterina coronata).

At the sand bank, there were plenty of sand dollars.

A little sea cucumber.

There were several synaptid sea cucumber in the seagrass meadow.

A few sandfish sea cucumber were also spotted.

This little kite butterflyfish was trapped in a little tidal pool.

A very well-camouflaged solefish resting on the sandy substrate.

Initially thought this little frogfish to be a piece of dead leaf until I took a closer look.

Found this little crab with very beautiful patterns on its back at the rocky area.

The mosaic crab, said to be the most poisonous crab in Singapore, and one of the most poisonous in the world.

A cute little pebble crab that kept burrowing into the sand and we had a hard time trying to take some nice photos of it.

We also found a pair of Platydoris scrabra nudibranchs.

And I found 2 really pretty flatworms! Here's a reddish orange one...

And this one with a blue border.

This is an Actinodendron anemone which I haven't seen for quite a while. It's commonly called Hell's fire anemone due to the painful stings it can give.

There were lots of little carpet anemones among the seagrasses.

Some of the bigger ones, like this gigantea carpet anemone (Stichodactyla gigantea), were the homes for little anemonefishes! They were very shy though, and thus I didn't managed to get any photos of them today.

There were a few swimming anemones too.

And also, a few upside-down jellyfish. I had to turn this one over to take a quick photo of the top side :P

We also managed to see some little terns in action - hunting fishes!

One the whole, this was a really enjoyable trip, with so many special finds, especially when I was with such a fun group of friends - my fellow Semakau guides! :)


ChrisM said...

I never get tired of seeing pictures of Protoreaster.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

great stuff. I shall be abck when I have more time!

Ron Yeo said...

To Chris:
So do I... :) And thanks for the information you've published on your blog! Have learned a lot from reading the entries.

To Kaoki:
So sorry, was away for the past 10 days and didn't have internet access, and thus changed to moderation mode. Perhaps like me, you can start out as a volunteer first?

To Neil:
Thanks for visiting my blog :)