28 November 2015

Our first survey of Coney Island

The team have our first look at Coney Island's shores during yesterday's low spring tide. There is a sandy stretch just opposite Pulau Ubin that has seagrasses and all kinds of interesting marine life.
We heard scary stories about sandflies on this shore, so we came fully prepared.

22 November 2015

Chek Jawa with jellyfish and otters!

Another glorious day at Chek Jawa with families and kids at monthly free guided tour of the Chek Jawa boardwalk with the Naked Hermit Crabs yesterday.
We saw jellyfishes and otters! These are more commonly seen at high tide! So it's not true that you should only visit Chek Jawa at low tide.

15 November 2015

Fun field session with the newest Marine Park volunteer guides

Introducing the newest volunteer guides of the Sisters Islands Marine Park! We a great field session last night.
We practiced our stories, got familiar with the walk route and practiced 'seeking' for special animals to share with the visitors.

14 November 2015

Pulau Ubin OBS briefly

This is probably the loveliest part of Pulau Ubin. Tanjung Tajam on the western end of the island under the charge of Outward Bound Singapore.
Yesterday, I had an opportunity to visit with the wonderful OBS team who are organising volunteers to help clean up Ubin and restore nature there.

MORE workshop for Marine Park volunteers

Yes, we can make a difference for our Marine Park! 30 new and old volunteers gathered for the second round of Classroom Workshops, as part of preparation to be volunteer guides at the Marine Park.
Yesterday, we had a great time brainstorming ideas on how to conduct fun and meaningful walks for visitors. Thanks to enthusiastic participants, and the hard work put in by NParks and volunteers to make these possible.

12 November 2015

NO 'Blue Trees' please. We are Singapore.

The Blue Bark stops here. Despite pleas by artists, nature lovers and ordinary people, the National Arts Council still refuses to say whether it will cancel plans for artist Konstantin Dimopoulos to paint blue our living trees at Dhoby Ghaut Green, according to a Zaobao article 11 Nov. "It's been done in other cities before", "the paint is safe", "the artist has won awards and aclaim" were some of the reasons given by the Council, who say The Blue Trees is intended to "draw awareness and discussion to issues of global deforestation."
NAC wants our living trees to look like this.
Taken from the NAC website
But Singapore is a city of people who already love trees. We don't treat trees like furniture to be painted or vandalised. We know each tree is home to tiny plants and animals living on and under its bark. Each tree is the precious centre of a living web of birds and other creatures. Even 'ordinary' roadside trees and trees growing in the middle of town. Because Singapore is a City in a Garden.

Today, during my daily morning walk, I took a closer look at the roadside trees. They are beautifully painted by natural...
Posted by Ria Tan on Wednesday, 11 November 2015

In Singapore we PLANT trees, we don't paint trees. Many if not most of us already understand deforestation (probably better than the artist), after breathing the effects of deforestation for several months.

Add your voice to the issue on http://ayn2015thebluetrees.peatix.com/ (scroll to bottom, wait for comments to load) or https://www.nac.gov.sg/feedback

[Update 13 Nov in Today newspaper: "National Parks Board (NParks) said yesterday that the bark of the trees at Dhoby Ghaut Green cannot be coloured blue, as it withdrew support for a community art project. “NParks should have been mindful of the sensitivities of the community towards our trees and the potential impact on insect biodiversity,” said Ms Kalthom A Latiff, NParks’ deputy director of arts and heritage parks. “It has therefore reviewed this and has conveyed to NAC that it will not be supporting this project.” NParks’ permission was needed for the installation as the trees are on park land.

The NAC’s director of arts and community Chua Ai Liang said it respects NParks’ latest position and will discuss it with Mr Dimopoulos. “We hope we can find a way to collaborate even as the project evolves from its original concept,” said Ms Chua.]

I am blogging this so that there is a permanent record (that shows up on google search) of protests in Singapore against vandalising our naturally beautiful trees with Konstantin Dimopoulos' Blue Trees programme.


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