Crude oil is still on sitting the shore, and sheen and scum still floats on much of the lagoon.
'Pancakes' of crude oil still sit the mid-water mark. The outgoing tide drains along dark streams as they cut into the crude and results in a sheen that I saw almost throughout the entire lagoon. The area near the 'pancakes' smells the same as when I visited the shore the day after the oil spill landed here, nearly a year ago.
the other lagoon that I visited yesterday. But the colonies I saw seemed mostly alright and were not bleaching.
Favid corals (Family Faviidae). I also saw some Zebra coral (Oulastrea crispata) and Pore corals (Porites sp.). I saw fewer hard corals in terms of number of colonies and variety of species in this lagoon than in the other lagoon I visited yesterday. I also saw fewer compared to my last visit here in January 2011. Hopefully, this is only because I missed seeing them due to the rain.
Button zoanthids or colonial anemones (Zoanthus sp.).
Smooth ribbon seagrass (Cymodocea rotundata) dotted with small to medium-sized Haddon's carpet anemone (Stichodactyla haddoni).
Bazillion snails (Batillaria zonalis).
Striped hermit crabs (Clibanarius sp.). They were small to medium-sized, most of them were in shells that were too large for them. I also saw lots of tiny Tidal hermit crabs (Diogenes sp.). I saw many medium sized Swimming crabs (Family Portunidae) zooming away, and this one medium-sized moult of a Flower crabs (Portunus pelagicus).
Ornate gobies (Istigobius ornatus) everywhere near the seawall. Also many other fishes that zoomed about too quickly for Sneaky cam to shoot. While I'm thankful that I didn't see Mr Stonefish, I also didn't see any seahorses.
Nerite snails (Family Neritidae) as well as Planaxis snails (Planaxis sulcatus). I also saw several Spotted top shell snails (Trochus maculatus), Black lipped conch snails (Strombus urceus) and Firebrand murex snails (Chicoreus torrefactus). It was nice to see one large Dolphin shell snail (Angaria delphinus).
fan worms (Family Sabellidae), both the orange and the brown banded ones.
Common sea stars (Archaster typicus), including this assembly of four sea stars gathered together. Getting ready to mate? The rest of the sea stars were distributed rather far apart from one another.
Acorn worms (Class Enteropneusta). From the poop of some of these buried worms, it seems the sand below is much darker than that above. Stained by crude? Or a sign of oil-munching microbes at work beneath the sand? There were also many burrows and sand balls of Sand bubbler crabs (Scopimera sp.).
Tape seagrass (Enhalus acoroides) seems alright. I also saw two smaller patches of Tape seagrasss.
Sickle seagrass (Thalassia hemprichii) is still there and looks alright. But I still didn't see any Spoon seagrass (Halophila ovalis) here.
Mermaid's fan (Padina sp.) was particularly abundant. Ropes were covered with Pom pom red seaweed and other kinds of seaweeds.
More about the oil spill on this blog and on the Oil spill facebook page.