12 January 2017

Berlayar Creek with abandoned net

Berlayar Creek's intertidal shore has 'grown' larger since I last visited. There are now wider sandy shores and the seagrass meadows are lush!
Tape seagrass (Enhalus acoroides)
Alas, we found an abandoned fish net with two large horseshoe crabs trapped in it. And golf balls still wash up on the shore. Thanks to NParks for permission to survey the shore.

Berlayar Creek's sandy shores had signs of Sand bubbler crabs, and a few Solitary tubeworms. I also saw a few sand collars but no moon snails.
Living sandy shores of Berlayar Creek
There's a tiny sliver of rocky shores and some coastal forest plants on the high shore. The artificial walls had Onch slugs. I also saw some Nerites and common Turban snails.
Rocky shores of Berlayar Creek
There is now a lush cover of Spoon seagrasses and a small patch of Tape seagrass on the eastern side of Berlayar Creek. Among the animals seen among the seagrasses were large Fan shells, some sponges.
Champagne sponge (Callyspongia diffusa)
The Tape seagrass was flowering!
Female flowers of Tape seagrass (Enhalus acoroides)
The seagrass meadow is dotted with Haddon's carpet anemones, none of them had shrimps, but next to one carpet anemone, there were two Kite butterflyfishes! There were also Frilly anemones, a Giant carpet anemone and on the sandy shores, a Pearly anemone. On the high shore, there were some Bead anemones.
Near the low water mark, there are a few hard corals.
Pore coral (Porites sp.)
There are a few sponges and hard and soft corals growing on the seawall and hard surfaces at the low water mark. I didn't see any bleaching hard corals.
The mangroves at the mouth of the creek are doing well and there is lots of soft mud there.
Mangroves at Berlayar Creek
Sadly, the shores continue to be strewn with golf balls that come from the Keppel Club golf course on the northern bank of Berlayar Creek.
Golf balls on Berlayar Creek shore
We gathered what we could to remove them from the shore. But the situation is far improved from what we saw in Feb 2013.
Golf balls on Berlayar Creek shore
There was also a large pile of abandoned fish nets that was overgrown with seaweeds. Alas, two large coastal horseshe crabs were stuck in it.
Abandoned fish net at Berlayar Creek
The horseshoe crabs were still alive and did not seem too entangled in it. With a few snips of the scissors, they were quickly released and put into the water nearby. They seem to be a pair of male and female and were alright.
We removed the net that the horseshoe crabs were stuck in. There was another net that was semiburied and seemed older, the netting broke easily when we pulled it. We removed as much of the net as we could. As usual, we add our sighting to the Project Driftnet effort.
Abandoned fish net at Berlayar Creek
Sadly, we often see abandoned nets on Berlayar Creek. Let's hope this shore stays safe until we can visit it again.

Berlayar Creek lies just opposite the natural shores of Sentosa. So nice to see that Chris Wong was at Sentosa Tanjung Rimau at the same tide. He shared photos of what he saw and it's a relief to see that soft and hard corals are doing well there. Seems like coral bleaching may be over!

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