04 June 2015

Seagrassy Changi with festive Pulau Ubin

Changi always surprises! Today, a baby Knobbly sea star!
This shore has lots of seagrasses and thus, a lot of interesting marine life. After the shore trip, I headed straight for nearby Pulau Ubin for Ubin Day preparations.

Almost the entire Changi shore was covered in seagrasses! Usually, there are large patches of sandy shores and sand bars.
Most of the seagrasses were Spoon seagrasses all heavily covered in epiphytes, and skinny Needle seagrass. Unlike on our last trip here in Jan 2015, today I only saw small patches of Fern seagrasses.
There were lots of White Salmacis sea urchins, like land-mines in the seagrass meadows. We had to walk very carefully so as not to crush them.
There were many small Biscuit sea stars too, as well as small Plain sand stars and Painted sand stars. I saw few live Hammer oysters, and some small Window-pane shells. There were also many small Fan clams.
Also abundant, Pink warty sea cucumbers. There were also many Thorny sea cucumbers.
I also saw a lot of these Beige sea cucumbers that have yet to be identified. I also saw one small Garlic bread sea cucumber.
The most abundant critter must have been the brittle stars, mostly Flat-armed brittlestars. Creeping around everywhere, from tiny to medium-sized ones.
There were a few large Haddon's carpet anemones and they had a pair of anemone shrimps. I sense that there is regular collection of these anemones from this shore, which is why they don't occur in such high numbers as on Chek Jawa. I didn't see any cerianthids and I only saw a few sea pencils, but no other sea pens.
There were some small swimming anemones, and also some tiny Longspined scorpionfishes. I missed this one (lower left corner of the photo) until I got home and looked at the photo. I also saw one Peachia anemone.
While we didn't see any seahorses, I did see one Seagrass pipefish.
Crawling among the seagrasses were lots of these tiny Furry seahares. They are easy to miss as they are so small and well camouflaged.
A closer look reveals their pretty patterns.
How nice to see this Mitre snail which we haven't seen for a while. I saw several Black-lipped conch snails and many Gong gong. There were also many Big brown mactra clams.
I saw this tiny nudibranch (only because it was white) among tiny snails grazing on the seagrasses.
Also abundant with elbow crabs of all sizes. I saw a few small to medium-sized Swimming crabs
While there were plenty of Orange-striped hermit crabs, I didn't see many of the other kinds of hermit crabs that I usually here such as the Lavender hermit crabs.
In the distance, there is a humungous barge on the high shore. Probably doing the works that I saw in Jan 2015 at Carpark 6.
Today, we were treated to a gorgeous sunrise!
Our last trip here was in Jan 2015.

Straight after the trip, I headed for Pulau Ubin. My first time visiting during the traditional festivities, because these are usually held on low spring tide!
Min Lin (left) and I were there for Ubin Day preparations. We met with the students of Raffles Institution Outdoor Adventure Club (ODAC). Together with their instructor, Tan Sijie, they are doing a treasure hunt for Ubin Day! So that the public can learn more about the awesome heritage right in Ubin Town.
During our tour, one of the students discovered a Kapok Tree near Ubin Jetty. Wow! I didn't know about it.
Sijie also found some small durians, with no durian tree in sight...hmm, a mystery.
The wayang stage is all decked out for the celebrations.
I was thrilled to be able to get a glimpse of authentic wayang. It was being performed for The God and spirits. In full costume in the heat of the mid-day. And Sijie pointed out how one of the performers is only 14 years old. I am in awe.
I am also in awe of the awesome artistry of this gentleman. He must be very famous, I was too shy to ask his name.
There's so much going on at Pulau Ubin. And next week is Ubin Day! Find out more on the Ubin Day blog and facebook page. Come join me and Min Lin and thousands of people to celebrate and discover Ubin!

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