08 May 2011

Strange nudibranch at Cyrene

A strange nudibranch! Nor Aishah found it! Chay Hoon suggests it might be a kind of Cerberilla species.
So far, I've only seen Cerberilla on our northern shores. It's the first time I've seen this nudibranch. Cyrene is an awesome shore!

Today, Siti and her team of volunteers are checking up on her seagrass experiment at Cyrene. The set up is in the middle of Cyrene.
While the rest of the team survey Cyrene for driftnets and fish traps, I've offered to help Siti. My job is to clear the screens of seaweeds and gunk and scrape away the barnacles, as these may affect the readings. At Cyrene, the set up is quite clean. Even then, it seems I didn't really do a great job at cleaning. Oops.
While we clean, Siti takes readings assisted Nor Aishah. It's literally back-breaking work. Fortunately, we got started early in the morning and were more or less done by the time it started to get hot.
After 'helping' Siti, I had a quick look around Cyrene. I caught up with the rest of the team, they found a green Knobbly sea star (Protoreaster nodosus)! I've read that Knobblies come in green, but this is my first time seeing one.
"Monster slug!" Siti exclaims. And it's another sidegill slug (Pleurobranchus forskalii). We saw a pair during yesterday's tour. Wow, these slugs must be in season!
Today, I noticed many smaller Common sea stars (Archaster typicus). At first, I had thought these were juveniles, but ...
... I then noticed that smaller ones are often found in 'mating' position, usually on top of larger ones. These smaller stars are probably mature males! Wah!
Chay Hoon has found a pretty little jellyfish with a 'star' on top of its head. Nicholas, who knows a lot about jellyfishes, suggests it's probably a Cephea jellyfish, also aptly called the 'Crown jellyfish'. Another first time for me!
I saw a little black Slender sea moth (Pegasus volitans). Chay Hoon saw several!
I had a quick look at the sand bar. Once again, I saw this Eggwhite moon snail (Polinices albumen) which I have been regularly seeing on Cyrene lately.
It's a hot hot day! The Knobblies seem to be gathered near our landing point. Over the many times visiting Cyrene, I notice the bulk of Knobblies tend to gather together on a small part of the shore. Their 'gathering' point shifts over time. Hmm...I have no idea why. Still so much more to learn about our shores!
The rest of the team saw lots of interesting stuff! Kok Sheng saw some delightful fishes, Chay Hoon encountered more heart urchins and Marcus observed interesting Knobbly behaviour. They saw strange snails and other creatures too! I'm sure they will blog about these soon.

Fortunately, we didn't come across any abandoned driftnets or fish traps on our trip.

Tomorrow, one more morning trip to check out Sentosa.

Other posts about this trip

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