Minutes from the Central Business District are the living reefs of Kusu Island! We survey it well before dawn, with the lights of mainland Singapore on the horizon.
Kusu Island was closed due to asbestos in May 2018. Our last survey here was in Dec 2018 after the island was reopened. Today, I started at the reef edge facing the mainland. They were doing well!
Boulder horn coral is still there and doing well. If anything, it seems to have grown larger. I don't often come across this coral on our shores.
Branching montipora coral was still there.
Acropora goby, several Machine gun shrimps and a Bandit coral crab. These animals specialise in living in branching corals and help protect the corals too. Click on the links for more info.
Arabian cowries too, similar to what we saw yesterday at East Coast Park. They were also about the same size. Is it some kind of seasonal bloom?
There were still many Magnificent anemones. Finally, in a long while, I saw some Clown anemonefishes in a Giant carpet anemone, stranded out of the anemone at low tide - they will be fine after the tide turns. I also saw what might be a Merten's carpet anemone, which is not so commonly seen. Sadly, I didn't see any Haddon's carpet anemones on the seagrassy area. The rest of the team saw Fire anemones and other anemones.
Common sea stars as well as many large Cake sand dollars. I also saw one Big synaptid sea cucumber.
Very hairy hermit crab, which tends to grow very large and usually only seen in good reefs. There were also many Swimming crabs of all kinds.
Spoon seagrass with tiny leaves and Needle seagrasses with narrow leaves. The bloom of Sea Lettuce seaweed in the big lagoon seems to have gone! We have been seeing this bloom for years.
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Photos by others on the trip.
Loh Kok Sheng
Loh Kok Sheng
Others on this trip: Kelvin Yong, Able Yeo, Juria Toramae.