12 May 2017

Pasir Ris five months after the oil spill

Anemone hunt at soft silty shores of Pasir Ris Park! And a quick check on the seagrasses at the mouth of Sungei Tampines.
Seagrass meadows at Pasir Ris Park
This shore was impacted by the the 300-tonne oil spill in the East Johor Strait five months ago. My last trip here was one week after the oil spill in Jan 2017.

It was good to see sea anemones on the shore. I saw one tiny seagrass anemone, there were many banded bead anemones, burrowing striped bead anemones, and one small Haddon's carpet anemone.
I was surprised to see many Sea pencils on sandier parts of the shore. I saw one Cerianthid and one Plain sand star.
There were some Ball sea cucumbers washed up and bloated on the shore, and one small Garlic Bread sea cucumber.
I saw two Blue-striped hermit crabs, tiny Mangrove tree-dwelling crab, Purple climber crabs and some Orange fiddler crabs. There were also some tiny Swimming crabs and tiny shrimps in pools ofo water.
I saw one Bearded mudskipper which prefers really soft silty shores. There were many small mudskippers and gobies of all kinds in pools of water.
On the mangrove trees, there were some interesting Onch slugs.
I saw many tiny whelks and one large Olive whelk. On dead wood, there were many Drills feasting on barnacles.
Soft ground is great for worms of all kinds. From long bristley ones, to tiny Silt flatworms to very long Pink ribbon worms. I also saw some tubeworms.
In fact, throughout our trip, I noticed two men dilligently digging up worms from the shore.
Digging for worms on Pasir Ris Park
Although I did not come across any oil slick or sheen, I did notice scum landing on the shore.
Scum on Pasir Ris Park shore
It washed up on the seagrasses.
Scum on Pasir Ris Park shore
Coating the seagrasses and other animals on the shore.
Scum on Sea pencil (Lituaria sp.)
But most of the seagrasses that I saw (Spoon seagrasses with large leaf blades) seemed alright. I did not see any bleaching seagrasses. There was a bloom of Sea lettuce seaweed.
Scum on Pasir Ris Park Spoon seagrass (Halophila ovalis)
It was also a relief not to see any of the mussels that we saw invading the soft shore at Kranji in Mar 2017.

Dayna Cheah also shared great photos of the trip on facebook. She saw a family of otters on the way home (she went back another way than the rest of us.)

Posts about the Jan 2017 Johor Strait oil spill

Survey on 10 Feb, one month after the oil spill

Other surveys and news posts


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