03 September 2015

Sharing the marvelous marine life at Marina at Keppel Bay

There are stunning reefs that settled naturally at Marina at Keppel Bay!
Thanks to Jessica Leong of Keppel, a team from NParks and I had a chance to visit today.

Jessica begins by explaining how the area was originally a shipyard before Keppel decided to turn it into waterfront housing.
It was good that we visited at low tide, so we could even see the marine life that grows on the walls of the Marina. There are hard corals, soft corals and more. These attract schools of colourful reef fishes.
In areas which get plenty of sunlight, a variety of hard corals and soft corals grow on the pontoons. These float in the water, so the animals are always submerged and not exposed at low tide.
Among the interesting animals include feather worms.
In darker places where the sun don't shine, other kinds of marine life flourish. These include all kinds of colourful sea fans, sponges and associated animals.
Under the 'bridge' where the pontoon is shaded, more sea fans and other animals that do well without sunlight.
More sea fans.
Colourful soft corals.
The Marina has won many environmental awards, and deservedly so. The rich marine life found here is a testament to their effort to control environmental impact of boating activities and to keep the waters of the Marina clean.
In 2009, I took these photos at the request of the Marina in their effort to document their marvellous marine life. Here's some of what I saw on the first photo shoot and second photo shoot. More of my photos of Marine at Keppel Bay on flickr here.
Debby Ng of Hantu Bloggers, Abigayle Ng of the Blue Water Volunteers and other volunteers also contributed photos to this effort which is showcased on the Marina website. Marine life we have seen here include hard corals, soft corals, anemones, sea fans, and reef fishes of all kinds.
More about the good work of Marine at Keppel Bay on their website dedicated to it. Debby shares more about the approaches taken by the Marina that allow such marine life to settle here.
What is even more amazing is that beautiful marine life can grow on all kinds of artificial structures! Here's more examples that I've come across in Singapore.

Wouldn't be wonderful if marine structures can incorporate designs that encourage such natural settlement? Perhaps even a 'Boardwalk to Nowhere'? Floating in the water, such pontoons allow ordinary people to view marine life at any tide, without getting wet!

Or why not consider a Singapore Great Barrier Reef? Because our artificial shores have been colonised by reefs, mangroves, seagrasses and more!

For example, a coral reef has settled naturally on the seawalls at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal. The reef has a good variety of species and survived the massive 2010 oil spill. More about this reef and other reef life that have settled on artificial structures in Singapore.
A rich reef growing naturally at Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal, Jun 2013
Reefs have also settled on artificial seawalls at East Coast Park.
Living corals on artificial seawall, Jun 2015
Photo by Kok Sheng on his blog.
Mangroves have settled naturally on the artificial seawalls at Pulau Hantu. Trees are from diverse species and are tall and healthy. More about this mangrove and other mangroves that have settled on artificial shores in Singapore.
Checking the mangroves on the Pulau Hantu seawall in Mar 2013
Seagrass meadows have settled naturally inside the Tanah Merah artificial lagoon including seagrass species so far found only at Chek Jawa and Cyrene Reef. Seagrass were also seen on artificial shores at East Coast Park. More about these seagrasses and other seagrasses that have settled on artificial shores in Singapore.

Lush seagrasses with Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal
on the horizon. May 2013.
Singapore HAS rich and amazing marine life. And it is possible to have more if we study what is going on and give nature a helping hand.


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