04 May 2013

Naked at Chek Jawa again!

I'm back on the shore with the Naked Hermit Crabs and a wild bunch of families!
It was a hot clear day with lots of interesting sightings!

Wow, we had lots and lots of visitors today, probably about 80 mums, dads and kids! A small school group and a small group of visitors who were already at Chek Jawa and decided to join us.
The star performer of the group was this young gentleman who was quick to spot all kinds of things and work out where we are on the map!
Dad and I stop halfway up the Jejawi Tower to catch our breaths and enjoy the panoramic view in the shade.
This was the best innovation for the day! The umbrella as a pointer. As well as a handy tool to pick up accidentally dropped toys. And of course, as a shade in the hot weather. Here in the back mangroves, we looked at colourful little fiddler crabs, tiny mudskippers, a Giant mudskipper, Tree-climbing crabs as well as the Nipah palms which were blooming and fruiting.
Wow, there were lots more fiddler crabs when we got out to the seaward side of the mangroves.
"Big mudskipper!"
Oh yes, indeed. This must be the biggest Blue-spotted mudskipper I've seen on Chek Jawa so far. We also saw 'dancing mudskippers' that stand on their tails to impress the lady mudskippers. As well as all kinds of other mudskippers quarreling and playing on the mudflats. We also looked at the Great-billed heron, a Grey heron, kingfishers, a soaring fish eagle and many swooping swifts.
Wow, there was a large preying mantis on the railing. This insect has large front limbs armed with teeth that can grab a butterfly or other insect.
The kids are fascinated by the mantis!
Oh dear, almost all the large oysters on the rocky shore has just been pried open. Probably by a human with a screw driver. Sigh.
It was a gorgeous blue-sky day on a gently outgoing tide. It made for super pretty photos from the coastal boardwalk.
The water was so clear we could see the Spoon seagrass and rare Ribbon seagrass growing right below the boardwalk. We also spotted a carpet anemone that Ivan told us about. Ley Kun told us she also saw an octopus!
In the distance, we saw a huge LNG carrier slowly pass by along the international waters that run by Pulau Ubin. The shipping lanes lead to Pasir Gudang port in Johor and Sembawang Shipyards in Singapore.
We take plenty of drink and food stops to keep the kids hydrated. Auntie has prepared interesting cookies in the shape of a cow and a pig. Hmm...
Oh, someone has spotted a Malayan water monitor lizard lazily walking in the shady part of the rocky shore above the waterline.
In the water, mum spots a swirling school of little fishes. It didn't come out so good in this photo. We stopped by the hornbill nest box on the way back but didn't see anyone in the box.
When we get back to the Visitor Centre, everyone has fun drawing about what they saw and their wishes for Chek Jawa.
The young ladies also have fun drawing for the Naked Guestbook.
Mama Crab Ley Kun had brought a group of young people from Meridien JC who walked all the way to Chek Jawa! They too shared their thoughts for the Guestbook.
This young gentleman who wrote an impressive piece in Mandarin preferred to have a photo of his guide Daniel hold the artwork instead of himself.
Brother and Sister duo with their artwork. Ethan and Cathlyn and mum and dad had joined us earlier on our Pasir Ris walk and returned with friends for the Chek Jawa walk. It was a thrill to see them again!
My special find of the day was an easily accessible flower of the Criticially Endangered Seashore nutmeg! This tree has male and female flowers on different trees. This looks like a male flower, different from the female flowers that I had taken photos of earlier.
There's always something new to learn and discover on every trip to the seashore!

Join the Naked Hermit Crabs on our monthly free guided walk at Chek Jawa more details and online registration.

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