20 December 2008

More mangroves of Pulau Semakau

I had a quick look at the mangroves from the seawall while the Butterfly Team were busy with their work (and also, I was too lame to hang around in the mosquito infested forest).You certainly can get a close look at the mangroves from the wall.There were little streams and pools among the almost solid wall of mangroves. Jacqueline saw mudskippers and shore birds too.
With a patch of Spoon seagrasses (Halophila ovalis)! Alas, no Beccari's seagrass (Halophila beccarii) which are seen near mangroves in our Northern shores. There was a strange pile of lots of broken shells of Rodong or Telescopium snails (Telescopium telescopium) on the sea wall. I'm not sure why they're there.Among the most beautiful of mangroves is Tumu (Bruguiera gymnorrhiza) with the bright red flower bracts.The flower itself has brown petals and the propagule is short, fat and sausage-shaped.Api-api puteh (Avicennia alba) is another commonly seen mangrove tree with long narrow green leaves that have a whitish underside, hence their malay and scientific names: 'puteh' and 'alba' mean 'white'.The seedlings are tear-drop shaped and somewhat velvety.And there was a rather strange Avicennia tree too. It had more squat seedlings. With a rather squarish stem.Here's the flowers. Could this be Avicennia marina?

Bakau minyak (Rhizophora apiculata) is the most commonly seen mangrove on Pulau Semakau. Mainly because large tracts of these trees have been planted as part of efforts at replacing the mangroves lost in the creation of the landfill.
This mangrove tree has red stipules (new leaves that are still rolled up and emerge at the growing tips of a branch). The flowers have thick bracts and are stuck on short stalks, close to the branch.
This particular tree, however, had reddish propagules.Here's a closer look at some.And a closer look at an all-red one.

Could this mean that the tree has been exposed to pollution? Like the one we saw on our earlier trip and discussed on the colourful clouds blog? Oh dear.

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