Saturday, August 22, 2009

Two Days at Sungei Buloh

Last Thursday and Friday morning, I was at Sungei Buloh conducting a workshop. As usual, there were plenty to see there!

Common Sandpiper (Actitis hypoleucos)
It seemed like the migration season had started, as we saw a few Common Sandpipers (Actitis hypoleucos) like the one above, and Common Redshanks (Tringa totanus) at the main bridge area.

Orange Mud Crab (Scylla olivacea)
Under the bridge on Friday, we saw this huge Orange Mud Crab (Scylla olivacea). This is the most valuable local crab used in various local dishes, such as the Chilli Crab and Black Pepper Crab.

Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis)
Near the bridge, we saw the nest of an Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis) which is occupied!

Stork-billed Kingfisher (Pelargopsis capensis)
We also saw a Stork-billed Kingfisher (Pelargopsis capensis) on a tree near the main bridge. This is the largest kingfisher in Singapore.

Sea Almond (Terminalia catappa)
Many of the Sea Almond (Terminalia catappa) trees in the reserve had turned red and shedding their leaves.

Bumped into Sam on Thursday, and he found this little frog sitting on the leaf of a fan palm.

Common Greenback (Hylarana erythraea)
Near the freshwater pond, we saw a Common Greenback (Hylarana erythraea).

Slender Skimmer (Orthetrum sabina)
When there are freshwater bodies, there are usually dragonflies too. This is a Slender Skimmer (Orthetrum sabina). I have seen this species of dragonfly feeding on other smaller dragonflies and damselflies.

Apple Snail Eggs
In the freshwater pond, we saw quite a number of these egg clusters too. They belong to the apple snail, an invasive species. It is really unfortunate that this invasive species was introduced to our freshwater through the aquarium trade, and they have out-competed our native apple snails. Our native apple snails have white-coloured eggs.

Due to the sunny weathers, we saw quite a few skinks on both days too.

Shield Bugs (Calliphara nobilis)
There were lots of Shield Bugs (Calliphara nobilis) every where!

Barat Barat (Cassine viburnifolia)
At the mangrove boardwalk, the Barat Barat (Cassine viburnifolia) was still flowering.

Dog-faced Water Snake (Cerberus rynchops)
On Thursday, we also saw a Dog-faced Water Snake (Cerberus rynchops).

Giant Mudskipper (Periophthalmodon schlosseri)
As per most trips to Sungei Buloh, the Giant Mudskipper (Periophthalmodon schlosseri) is a common sight. This is the biggest mudskipper in Singapore.

Nipah Palm (Nypa fruticans)
At the mangrove boardwalk, the Nipah Palm (Nypa fruticans) is fruiting! This palm is where you get your attap chee in your ice kacang.

Smooth Otters (Lutrogale perspicillata)
On Friday, we were really fortunate to see a family of Smooth Otters (Lutrogale perspicillata)! LK's group saw a total of seven of them, but when my group arrived, we only saw six of them. More photos of the otters can be found in my earlier entry.

Mangrove Cannonball (Xylocarpus granatum)
We were quite lucky that a Mangrove Cannonball (Xylocarpus granatum) is fruiting, and we got to see its huge, round fruit.

Malayan Water Monitor (Varanus salvator)
The students with me were rather amazed at how used the Malayan Water Monitor (Varanus salvator) was to human presence.

Golden Orb Web Spider (Nephila pilipes)
And finally, my students can better appreciate how the Golden Orb Web Spider (Nephila pilipes) got its common name :)

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