05 January 2018

Corallimorph Hunt Day 3: Big Sisters Island

We head out to the Sisters Islands Marine Park on our last low tide survey of the series. It's sunset by the time we get to work.
Surveying Big Sisters Island
There are lots of corallimorphs, as well as corals and other marine life here.

I spent most of the time working, so not many photos taken. Fortunately, lots of corallimorphs and some of them were quite large, compared to those we have seen on Pulau Hantu yesterday. I never really took note of their size until now. Alas, we couldn't find the special corallimorphs. Perhaps we'll have better luck next series of low tide surveys.
There seems to have been a 'sand avalanche' from the high shore. Making the big lagoon shallower and sandier. Possibly rains washing down the sand? Mustn't forget that most of the shores on both Big and Little Sisters were reclaimed: seawalls were built on the reef edge and the reef flat buried. The original islands were much tinier.
Some of the large boulder corals had large dead portions, but there were many little corals growing on the seawall. I saw nice healthy Pore corals and a few happy Galaxy corals. I couldn't find the big colony of Anemone coral in the middle of the lagoon (maybe hidden under the Sargassum bloom) but one colony I saw on the seawall was rather pale.
 It was nice to see the usual variety of hard corals. And most of them were alright.
There are not many soft corals on this shore. But I did see a good variety, mostly small colonies and all not bleaching. My last trip here was in Jun 2017.
There were also several Giant carpet anemones, many Frilly sea anemones, all were alright. I saw an octopus, and there were many little reef fishes active in the water after sunset.

More about Big Sisters Island

This island is now part of the Sisters Islands Marine Park. Like many parks in Singapore, you can visit Big Sisters Island any day from 7am to 7pm. You don't need a guide or a permit to visit.

There is no ferry to the Sisters Islands but you can hire a water taxi to take you there from Marina South Pier. There are about 10 commercial water taxi companies located there. You can call to book a taxi or just go to the Pier and get a taxi. Most leisure visitors go with Island Cruise, which caters to tourists. 

More about the Sisters Islands Marine Park on the NParks website and on the Sisters Islands Marine Park blog and facebook group.

During low spring tide, lots of other people are also checking up our shores.

Abel Yeo and friends checked out Sentosa Tanjung Rimau shores...

And more photos by Abel.

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