Monday, October 15, 2007

A Walk from Bukit Timah to MacRitchie

Last Saturday, a few of us Semakau guides decided to go terrestrial for a change :)

And our target - to walk from Bukit Timah to MacRitchie.

I've often heard people telling me there's nothing much to see in our nature reserves - it's just trees, and trees, and more trees...

But really, if you can stop a while to observe the surrounding, the wonders unfold...

And here are just some of the beautiful sights and interesting things we saw along the way...

Sometimes, you just have to look up to see postcard perfect silhouettes.

And have you ever stopped to take a closer look at the leaves along the trail?

The intricate patterns on the fern leaves...

The dew on the big yam leaves...

And leaves don't just come in green...

Every now and then, there were surprises among the leaves, and in this case, adding a pastel hue to the refreshing green.

And among the trees were splashes of orange, contributed by our native wild ixora.

And little yellow flowers dotted the grass patches.

There were lots of interesting fungi with weird shapes here and there.

And many of them were brilliantly coloured too!

But wait, enough about the flora, but do we have any interesting fauna?

Forest ants were a common sight, and they can be every where - on the ground, tree trunks, flowers...

Many cute little crickets were also spotted squatting on leaves.

The white-handed fly looks like it's wearing a pair of white gloves.

There were several pretty damselflies.

And lots of dragonflies!

This water stick insect looks like it's skating on the water, but actually it's swimming in it!

And in the water, we saw fishes too, including this snakehead.

Along the way, several monkeys were also spotted. This one is biting on a little fig. That just shows that monkeys can find food on their own. You don't have to feed them, or eventually they may just lose the ability to find food on their own!

And what a pleasant surprise! A snake! Was looking through my reptiles book and some of the snake forums, but couldn't find one that looks like the above, which has a green belly and reddish brown back.

It started raining again, and we had to put on our ponchos. But still, it felt great to be walking among the greenery.

Finally, we reached MacRitchie Reservoir, which is part of the Central Catchment Nature Reserve.

This was not the first time I've done this, but going with fellow nature guides made the experience a whole new one! Along the way, we shared the bits and pieces of information we knew about the flora and fauna we saw, and I've certainly learnt quite a number of new things, and at the same time, enjoy the beauty that nature offers!

There has been a lot of talks on how to increase environmental awareness. Perhaps apart from the various campaigns and policies, another effective (or perhaps, more effective) solution will be to educate the masses on how to enjoy what the environment can offer them?

Perhaps when people can better appreciate their interaction with the environment, they will learn to protect it?

And that's why I'm really glad that there are more nature groups in Singapore these days conducting guided trips to our various nature spots :)

This entry was written in support of Blog Action Day.


MS said...

"..there's nothing much to see in our nature reserves - it's just trees, and trees, and more trees..."? LOL! BTNR alone has almost 1000 flowering plants, with more than 400 species make it to canopy size (how many, say, hard corals, in whole Singapore?). Each and every one of them exhibiting unique ecology (e.g. habitat specialization, chemical defense, interaction with other flora & faunas etc.) and very low growth, reproduction & dispersal rate. I say there are more trees than meet the eyes ;)

~mantamola~ said...

So u got the snake's id oledi? i have the front shot that can help to id and will put it up next few days.

Ron Yeo said...

Hi MS, can't agree more that the trees alone are more than enough to fill our eyes. But guess most lay people are more interested in animals. Kind of sad, really...

Hi Mantamola, can't find the ID as well. Maybe can check with CK when I'm back :)