26 October 2012

Mangrove anemones and special slug at the Northern Expedition Day 12

Revived teams plunge into the mud as field trips resume on Day 12 of the Northern Expedition of the Mega Marine Survey.
Among the highlights, several mangrove sea anemones and the mangrove leaf slug. Also jellyfishes and other fun explorations in the morning.

Even though today is a public holiday, a large team of volunteers arrived early in the morning to help out with sorting.
The more adventurous went into the mangroves nearby to find marine life swimming around in the high tide.
A small team head out to catch jellyfishes and fishes along the beach at Outward Bound Singapore. And they came back with a bucketful. The sorting team, hard at work on dead wood take a moment to admire the jellyfishes.
Here's the pretty jellyfishes and fishes.
Another small team headed out to a fish farm to see what marine life is found there, both swimming nearby as well as growing on the nets and other hard surfaces.
The fish farm team returned with lots of great samples of fluffy stuff which may be bryozoans and other interesting marine life.
Low spring tides have resumed and the teams are revived after resting during Day 11. I went along with the team that visited Sungei Mandai, while another team headed out for Nordin Beach on Pulau Ubin.
We meet up with more volunteers on the mainland. Before we begin, a safety briefing by Yen-Ling to make sure everyone is aware of the potential dangers in the mangroves.
It's a short walk through grassy lallang, to the very overgrown area where the railway line  used to be.
A last photo before we plunge into the mangroves.
After much searching, we finally find the tiny little anemones with spots that Prof Daphne is looking for, as well as a few other small anemones that need a closer look at.
Ooo, Dr Tan Swee Hee spots a nice cluster of mushrooms! It's taken for the museum, which is building up its collection of fungi.
We caught up with the rest of the team and they have found a Dog-faced watersnake. This mildly venomous snake is harmless if it is gently handled. We will take it back to photograph and take tissue samples, and return it to Mandai when we visit it again tomorrow.
Marcus Ng found the Mangrove leaf slug today! I was really hoping to show these to Dr Kathe who is the expert on these sap sucking slugs.
Photo by Marcus Ng on facebook.
There'll be more trips in the days ahead, and in some of them, we anticipate some potential hazards. Safety is a priority and there will be thorough briefings and precautions as we work on our shores.
Also in the lab, the latest report on the Northern Expedition is proudly posted on the notice board.
Tomorrow, more sorting and field trips!

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