Beting Bronok is a wonderland of colourful animals of all kinds. From sponges to soft and hard corals. With all kinds of associated mobile animals like crabs, fishes, nudibranch and lots more.
Velcro crabs (Camposcia retusa) because it moved. It had stuck living Knobbly soft corals and sponges onto itself!
basket star wrapped on a soft coral.
Bedok Jetty earlier in the month. At Bedok Jetty, they were wrapped around the many sea fans found there. Perhaps the one at Beting Bronok is wrapped around the soft coral because there were so few sea fans there?
Pink flowery soft corals also have False cowrie snails (Family Ovulidae) that perfectly match their host! Can you spot the snail in this photo?
Ball flowery soft corals. These usually have white snapping shrimps and I saw one of these shrimps struggling a short distance from its host.
Red scaly sea star (Nepanthia sp.), which looked strange to me because the 'scales' were hidden by many long thick tube feet that emerged all over the upperside of the body.
Biscuit sea stars (Gonodiscaster scaber) and many Spiny sea star (Gymnanthenea laevis). I also saw several Painted sand stars (Astropecten sp.).
Blue feather stars.
Thorny sea urchin (Prionodidaris sp.), but I didn't see other kinds of sea urchins. And several brittle stars of all kinds. I also saw many Orange sea cucumbers, a few Thorny sea cucumbers (Colochirus quadrangularis), and a few Purple sea cucumbers and some Ball sea cucumbers (Phyllophorus sp.). I also saw one Garlic bread sea cucumber (Holothuria scabra).
Sponge nudibranch (Ategema spongiosa) is large but a challenge to spot as it is very well camouflaged among the rubble and sponges. Can you spot it in this photo?
Dendrodoris fumata and another one which is something else. Chay Hoon told me but I forget...oops.
Bartail flathead (Platycephalus indicus), many filefishes (Family Monacanthidae) and tiny fishes like baby Butterflyfishes (Family Chaetodontidae).
Onyx cowries (Cypraea onyx), as well as some Ovum cowrie (Cypraea ovum). Siong Kiat found one Baler snail (Melo melo) but we didn't come across any Noble volutes (Cymbiola nobilis). There were many Fan shell clams (Family Pinnidae). Ywee Chieh found a reef octopus. There were lots of large Black spotted flatworms, but I didn't see any other kinds of flatworms.
Haddon's carpet anemones (Stichodactyla haddoni). In one I saw a largeFive-spot anemone shrimps (Periclimenes brevicarpalis) as well as many tiny anemone shrimps (yellow arrow). I've not noticed both kinds of shrimps in one anemone before.
Swimming anemones (Boloceroides mcmurrichi). I also saw two Glass anemone (Dofleinia sp. and one black blob that looks like a retracted Haekel's anemone (Actinostephanus haeckeli). There were a few cerianthids including a handsome Black-mouthed cerianthid.
flowery sea pens (Family Veretillidae), some Common sea pen (Pteroides sp.) and some Slender sea pen (Virgularia sp.). The dominant cnidarian on Beting Bronok remain zoanthids, mostly Button zoanthids (Zoanthus sp.). These animals carpet vast stretches of the shore.
Skinny sea fan and the rest were Candelabra sea fans. They didn't have many commensals in them.
orange fern-like hydroids (Sertularella sp.) but I couldn't find any nudibranchs in them. Lots of large 'bushes' of stinging hydroids with all kinds of small animals in them. Also many Candy hydroids although most of them were heavily covered in epiphytes. Chay Hoon found a lot of interesting nudibranchs in them.
Pore corals (Porites sp.) brown or green boulder-shaped or brown with bumps. With a few tiny colonies of Neat hexa coral (Pseudosiderastrea tayami) and Zebra corals (Oulastrea crispata). I didn't see the Boulder sandpaper coral (Psammocora sp.) and Favid coral (Family Faviidae) that I saw in Jun 2012. All of them seemed fine and I only saw one small colony that was bleaching. The corals at Beting Bronok suffered badly from mass bleaching in 2010, and there are signs of mass bleaching this year too. Oh dear.
Knobbly sea star (Protoreaster nodosus). Ywee Chieh and Diego combed the entire shore thoroughly and couldn't find any more. Oh dear. In the past we had seen a lot, and then over the years, less and less. In fact, in 2012 we only saw one too (but a different one). And only six were seen during our trip in 2011.
|Colourful marine life at Beting Bronok in Jun 2012.|
|Beting Bronok in Jun 2012.|
|Colourful marine life at Beting Bronok in 2003.|
|Sea fan garden at Beting Bronok, Jun 2004.|
Where is Beting Bronok? What is it's status and future?
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It was good to see that Beting Bronok remains alive and full of fascinating creatures. But to me, it seems to be in steady decline since the reclamation started at nearby Pulau Tekong . It has since also been affected by the flooding that led to mass deaths at Chek Jawa in 2007, and the coral bleaching in 2010 and a ferry ran aground on Beting Bronok in Jul 2011. Here's some old photos of marine life at Beting Bronok. We can only hope for the best for this wonderful reef on our Northern shore.
There are plans that may affect Beting Bronok a in the not too distant future. These include plans to locate at Pengerang Johor, a petrochemical complex that was rejected in Taiwan for environmental and health reasons.
2030 landuse plan by the Ministry of National Development includes plans for a road link (black line) from the mainland jumping off at Punggol, crossing to Pulau Ubin through Chek Jawa to jump off to Pulau Tekong before circling back to the mainland on Changi East. Proposed reclamation (in yellow) will bury Pasir Ris shores, Pulau Sekudu and Chek Jawa as well as a large amount of shore at Changi Beach.
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Chay Hoon shares lots more photos of awesome slugs that only she can spot!