I'm back again on Cyrene Reef, this time with a very adventurous team from NParks.
We arrive at Cyrene at the first light of day. There are two boats of people visiting today!
in the middle of the industrial triangle.
Knobbly sea stars (Protoreaster nodosus)!
Common sea stars (Archaster typicus) which are abundant on Cyrene but sadly, no longer common elsewhere in Singapore. A long time ago, they were indeed our most common sea star, before we lost many of their shallow, sheltered sandy shore homes to reclamation.
octopus! There's a rush to have a look at it. Fortunately, the little beast was quite obliging and allowed everyone to get a glimpse of it.
Pentaceraster sea star (Pentaceraster mammilatus). This sea star was first discovered on Cyrene and is a new record for Singapore. The CEO has a closer look at it.
recent trip to Cyrene two weeks ago. Such as the giant Forskal's sidegill slugs (Pleurobranchus forskali). Also the White sea urchin (Salmacis sp.) which is more common on our northern shores like Chek Jawa and seldom seen on our southern shores. Indeed, I consider Cyrene the Chek Jawa of the South.
Terumbu Pempang Darat, Terumbu Raya and the live firing islands of Sudong, Pawai and Senang. Finally, we see the lighthouse!
Nerite snails (Family Neritidae) laying while disk-shaped egg capsules in the rock pools. There were even some small hard corals growing there.
Fluted giant clam (Tridacna squamosa) at the base of the seawall. We carefully went down to have a look. Alas, it was stone dead! It's quite disconcerting to find so many dead giant clams recently on our shores. We found a dead one at Pulau Jong in Apr 2011, and on Terumbu Raya yesterday. Did they die because of coral bleaching last year? Like corals, giant clams also harbour symbiotic algae (zoocxanthallae) which are lost during bleaching, affecting the animals' health.
Giant top shell (Trochus niloticus) for everyone else to have a closer look. I also had a quick chat with the lighthouse keepers who said they seen a sea turtle laying eggs on the beach but sadly the nest was disturbed by monitor lizards. They also sometimes see dolphins, and regularly see large fishes in the area.
International Coastal Cleanup Singapore, a volunteer-based effort to collect data on our marine trash. You can be a part of the solution!
Jan 2011. More about Raffles Lighthouse in this earlier post.