27 November 2011

Another Magnificent day at Semakau!

A gorgeous Magnificent anemone was nestled on rocks right next to a TeamSeagrass transect!
I had a great trip with TeamSeagass at Pulau Semakau yesterday, despite the changeable weather. And many interesting encounters too!

A closer look at the Magnificent anemone (Heteractis magnifica) shows that it has a pair of anemone shrimps (Periclimenes brevicarpalis)!
As I was measuring seagrass lengths, I actually tried to measure this pipefish! It's the Alligator pipefish (Syngnathoides biaculeatus) and it looks exactly like Tape seagrass (Enhalus acoroides)!
Here's a less bad photo of the fish! Collin, our expert on these fishes, shared more about it with the rest of the team.
On the way home, we saw a seahorse (Hippocampus comes)! Hurray! I was glad to be able to show it to Collin who is working on ways to save this beautiful animal. He checked it and pronounced it a mama. We couldn't find the papa seahorse who is usually nearby.
We also saw this humungous Garlic bread' sea cucumber (Holothuria scabra) - my foot is next to it for scale. That's good to see as these sea cucumbers are believed to play an important role in the health of seagrasses.
Oh dear, there's a huge amount of emissions coming out of the refineries at Pulau Bukom just off the seagrass meadows of Pulau Semakau. I don't think it's another fire. Probably part of flaring as the refineries have been reported to come nearly fully operational, following the big fire there in September.
After the trip, another massive round of gear wash up the following day. There sure is a lot to clean! Nearly half a kilometre of tape, and lots of bits and pieces
Washing is fun, at least for the cats. These two are always there to 'help'.
Hades, the Black Cat from Hell, gives a helping paw or two.
Kimmy is even licking the tapes!
After all is done, Hades checks to make sure the washing up has been done properly.
Tootsie doesn't really like to get wet, so he is staying out of this messy business.
This is the last of TeamSeagrass monitoring for 2011. And we're taking a break in December. But it all begins again in January! More about TeamSeagrass and how to join as a volunteer.

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