Hit by the massive oil spill in May 2010, this shore is still alive! There are lots of Haddon's carpet anemones (Stichodactyla haddoni) in a large and growing patch of Ribbon seagrasses at Tanah Merah.
It was good to see many Moon crabs (Ashtoret lunaris) out and about on the shore, including some large ones.
Swimming crabs (Family Portunidae) including this pair that look like they were about to mate. They seem awfully small to be of reproductive size.
Reef murex (Chicoreus sp.) seems to be working on getting into a Large cockle (Family Cardiidae). The murex can drill through shell but it takes time, so I left them alone.
squid zoomed past me in the murky water.
Acropora coral (Acropora sp.). Most of the corals I saw were Pore corals (Porites sp.) with some Favid corals (Family Faviidae). Most seemed alright except for one large Pore coral which appears to be suffering from some kind of disease.
Button zoanthids or colonial anemones (Zoanthus sp.) which are sometimes mistaken for hard corals.
Common sea stars (Archaster typicus). Lots of Dubious nerite (Clithon oualaniensis) and Bazillion snails (Batillaria zonalis) still cover large parts of the sandy lagoon.
Smooth ribbon seagrasses (Cymodocea rotundata) were doing well. With two large and lush patches. The leaf blades were nice and long and I didn't see any burnt or bleaching blades.
Spoon seagrass (Halophila ovalis) have started growing among the Ribbon seagrasses.
Garlic bread sea cucumber (Holothuria scabra) among the Ribbon seagrasses.
Tape seagrass (Enhalus acoroides) is still there and doing well. Unlike the spectacular sunset the day before, we had a muted sunset on this trip.
Sickle seagrass (Thalassia hemprichii) patch is doing well and I saw large patches of small Spoon seagrasses in the middle of the lagoon.
Padina sp. with small clumps here and there of various other kinds of seaweeds.
Casuarina trees (Casuarina equisetifolia). Although they look like pine trees, these are actually flowering trees. The male flowers are skinny and long, while the female flowers are club-shaped. The male and female flowers appear on separate trees.
correspondence with Siemens about this project.
Sand bubbler crabs (Scopimera sp.) seem alright and most of the sand piles created by burrowing Acorn worms (Class Enteropneusta) were pale, although a few were very dark.
Dec 2012. I visited the shore every month after the oil spill, but have recently eased up to less regular trips. There are too many other shores to check up. Hopefully, the situation at Tanah Merah will improve.
More about the oil spill on this blog and on the Oil spill facebook page.
Check out Kok Sheng's blog post with lots of other fabulous animals that he saw on this trip.