I tried to borrow the heart urchin from the crab for a closer look. I was going to return it. But the crab refused to let go. Clutching the heart urchin, it hurriedly disappeared into a crevice. But from the many photos I took, it looks like the Lovenia heart urchin (Lovenia elongata). The only other echinoderm I saw were several White rumped sea cucumbers (Actinopyga lecanora).
swimming crabs (Family Portunidae) of all kinds. As well as other Floral egg crabs (Atergatis floridus) and Red egg crabs (Atergatis integerrimus) and also the Spoon-pincer crab (Leptodius sp.). The rest of the team also saw the Mosaic crab (Lophozozymus pictor).
'Chocolate' swimming crab must be the same species as the Red swimming crab (Thalamita spinimana). Marcus Ng actually pointed this out to me earlier and I haven't gotten around to correct the wild fact sheets.
Fluted giant clam (Tridacna squamosa), although the scutes are barely sticking out. It was quite large, about 30cm. When I saw it I realised I forgot to bring my GPS. So sorry Mei Lin! The rest of the team saw several Spider conch snails (Lambis lambis) and Ivan saw a file clam (Lima lima).
Octopuses are quite common on our shores. But they are very well camouflaged. I nearly missed this one which blended so well with the sand and was perfectly motionless.
False clown anemonefish (Amphiprion ocellaris) in a Magnificent anemone (Heteractis magnifica). And there were also some of these 'Nemos' in Giant carpet anemones (Stichodactyla gigantea). One of the fishes was tiny but seemed mature, a miniature replica of the larger fishes in the same anemone!
in July 2010, there was bleaching on the shore. Today, most of the hard corals I saw were not bleaching. I only saw this large colony that was partially bleaching. More about coral bleaching on Bleach Watch Singapore.
Galaxy coral (Galaxea sp.), Brain corals (Family Mussidae), Carnation corals (Pectinia sp.), Disk corals (Turbinaria sp.) and Anemone corals (Goniopora sp.).
Cauliflower corals (Pocillopora sp.). This species was badly affected by coral bleaching. So it's good to see them, although both had signs of colony death. Tiny red coral crabs (Trapezia cymodocea) live in this coral, I accidentally took a photo of one.
Favid corals (Family Faviidae) are very common on this shore. Also common on this shore were Pore hard corals (Porites sp.).
Pebble coral (Astreopora sp.). I didn't know the polyps have a longish body column!
Mole mushroom corals (Polyphyllia talpina). But no other kinds of Family Fungiidae.
leathery soft corals (Family Alcyoniidae) on this shore of all kinds. I didn't see any that were bleaching. But most colonies I saw were small.
Flowery soft corals (Family Nephtheidae) to Feathery soft corals, and various kinds of sea anemones: Frilly sea anemones (Phymathus sp.) and Wriggly star anemone as well as corallimorphs (Order Corallimorpharia). I didn't see any that were seriously bleaching.
Shy glass peacock anemone. It rapidly 'shrivels' in the light and I need to photograph it quickly. Peacock anemones are not true anemones and it's probably better to call them cerianthids.
zoanthids (Order Zoanthidea) of all kinds.
Tape seagrass (Enhalus acoroides) as well as Sickle seagrass (Thalassia hemprichii) and Spoon seagrass (Halophila ovalis). They didn't seem to be doing very well here.
which we visited recently.
At sun rise, the plumes of emissions rise high into the sky.
When we got back to the boat, we shared about some of the exciting encounters we had. More about these in the posts below.
Another 1am wake up call soon, for another predawn trip in a few hours!
Other posts about this trip
- Liana on facebook with photos of shrimp goby, alicia sea anemone, big brittle star and more.
- Kok Sheng with coral forest, strange octopus behaviour, pufferfish and other fishes.
- Chay Hoon with lots of nudis and slugs and sea stars and sand dollars.
- Russel with moray eel, 'nemos', crabs, corals and more.
- Sam on facebook with colourful sponges, crabs, snake eel and more.
- Ivan on facebook with file clam! And lots of other fishies, corals and critters.
- Rene on facebook with snake eel and other colourful animals.
- Geraldine on facebook with colourful crabs.