11 August 2018

Changi still lively!

A seagrassy stretch of Changi is still very lively as we surveyed on a very low spring tide.
Various marine life on Changi Beach
I saw Noodle seagrass for the first time north of Tanah Merah! But there were fewer Knobbly sea stars, and the seagrasses were heavily coated in epiphytes.

Among the most abundant animals on the shore this morning were Swimming anemones and Thorny sea cucumbersand Pink warty sea cucumbers!
Various marine life with Swimming anemones (Boloceroides mcmurrichi)
Today, there were far fewer Knobbly sea stars compared to what we saw in Apr 2018. I only saw one medium sized one. There were lots of tiny Biscuit sea stars, a few sand stars, some tiny Cake sea stars, and a few brittle stars. There were some Common sea stars on the sandy area near the low water mark.
 I also saw this sea star that I can't identify.
There were many large White sea urchins. All of them were 'carrying' stuff so they are quite hard to spot. They densely covered the area but were not huddled next to one another in large numbers. I saw  a few small Black sea urchins well separated and usually hardly visible under all the stuff they were carrying. I also saw one tiny sea urchin that might be a Passion sea urchin.
As usual, the shore is thick with Thorny sea cucumbersand Pink warty sea cucumbers. I also saw many Beige sea cucumber and many buried Remarkable sea cucumbers. There were a few Orange sea cucumbers and some Ball sea cucumber.
The rest of the team spotted a Baler snail which is considered Endangered on the Singapore Red List.

As well as a Ram's murex also listed as Endangered.

I saw many Noble volutes including one small one riding on top of a bigger one (mating?). There were lots of Gong gong snails and many were laying eggs. I also saw many Pink moon snails today.  I came across one Miliaris cowrie, and one Hammer oyster. I noticed many small Window pane shells and many young Fan shell clams. There was also one Singapore scallop with a Conical slipper snail on it.
There were a lot a lot of red-banded shrimps today. I saw a few Penaid prawns. And lots of little elbow crabs, tiny Flower crabs. As well as one Spearer mantis shrimp.
In an area that is seldom exposed even at low tide, I saw many medium-sized Haddon's carpet anemones. They had tiny carpet anemone shrimps as well as Peacock tail anemone shrimps.
There were a lot of Swimming anemones everywhere on the shore. I saw two small Tiger anemones, a few Mini carpet anemones and one Common peachia anemone. I saw a few Cerianthids.
There were many Sea pencils, some Flowery sea pens and I saw one Spiky sea pen with porcelain crabs in it.
There were dense growths of Needle seagrass and Spoon seagrass, covering almost all ground. There was very little open sandy areas below the low water line. I only saw a sprinkling of Fern seagrasses. But I saw the patch of Smooth ribbon seagrass that I saw in Dec 2017, and for the first time, saw patches of Noodle seagrass! All the seagrasses were heavily covered in epiphytes. In Apr 2018, they were quite fresh and green. Sadly, I didn't see any dugong feeding trails today. We saw some on our last trip here in Apr 2018,
There was a small family group who appeared to be collecting Gong-gong snails. I could hear the thud as they dropped them into their bucket. We did not come across any traps or nets. The tide ended long before sunrise! Hopefully, this shore will remain well until we can return again.

Photos by others on this trip

By Loh Kok Sheng

By Jonathan Tan

By Siewmen Chong

By Sunny Tan

By Chay Hoon

Marcus Ng

Others on this trip: Rushan.

Meanwhile, Jianlin surveyed another part of Changi and shared these sightings...


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