02 February 2015

Creepy and cool Pasir Ris mangroves with the Naked Hermit Crabs!

Eww! A nest of fierce Fire ants is a creepy thing to watch!
I had so much fun with visitors at the free Naked Hermit Crabs evening guided walk at Pasir Ris mangroves yesterday!

Once again, we were delighted with the support of a large group of the Dunman High School Student Councillors. This is part of Kok Sheng's effort to introduce his students to nature and nature guiding under a very apt name of EXCEL. This programme hopes to expose students to real issues, and real efforts to address them by real people. It is the fourth year that Kok Sheng is running this awesome programme!
As usual, the kids spot lots of great stuff. There's lots of Giant mudskippers in the streams and pools. The mangrove was rather dry though, a sign of the dry season?
One of the sharp-eyed kids spot a planthopper nymph with fireworks coming out its backside! Sankar explains more about it.
We end with a lovely drawing session at the jetty on Sungei Tampines. Where we also gazed at herons flying. In the water, there were archerfish, jellyfish and more.
As usual, the kids share wonderful insights into our walk. They really observe and remember a lot.
Mr Wong Kah Leng, an Ubin volunteers, joined our walk for the first time. He shared with us some of the awesome artwork he has done of our wild places. To the delight of everyone!
Mama Crab Ley Kun shares more about Pasir Ris mangroves and the Naked Hermit Crabs with this couple who happened to be there with their very young child. Bravo! There are many people in Singapore who do care enough to visit our wild places.
As we ended the walk, we take a few group photos.
The Dunman High volunteers are obviously a big hit with the kids!
Before the walk began, Mr Wong told us about a heron that standing near the toilet.
We had a careful look at the bird from a distance so as not to alarm it. It seemed alright. It could walk normally. It appears rather small. Perhaps a juvenile that just left the nest? I think it was afraid to fly off because there were people playing frisbee on the grass nearby, and on the other side, people using the toilet.
Just as we started out walk, the bird decided to walk towards the carpark, away from the people playing frisbee. We made sure it got across safely by looking out for cars.
It reached the denser vegetation safely. It hopped onto a branch to have a look, then hopped away into the tall grass. I hope it is ok.
The Pasir Ris mangroves are just 10 minutes from Pasir Ris MRT and just next to DownTown East. It has educational and interesting panels so you can explore it on your own. It is the only mangrove boardwalk that is open 24/7. A night trip to here can be quite amazing. And here's more about why Pair Ris mangroves are so awesome.

Thanks to Shirley Yong for doing an awesome blog post about our walk!

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