Today, I saw some dugong feeding trails in the meadows of Spoon seagrass in the sandy centre of the reef flat near the arrival point. We saw some on our last survey on Jul 2020. We didn't see any on our last survey in May 2019. We saw many trails in Dec 2018. Also in Aug 2016. The first time we noted them was in May 2012.
Fluted giant clam near the arrival point that we have seen on our past surveys seems alright! We saw it first in Jun 2014. Burrowing giant clam.
Another special find was a live Cone snail! I saw this one burrowing on open sand. Chay Hoon found another one. I did not touch it with bare hands. The cone snail is one of the most dangerous animals on Singapore shores. The snail can inject bare hands and bare feet of swimmers and shore explorers in shallow water. Its tiny 'harpoon' is hardly felt so victims are often unaware until they show symptoms. The toxin can have serious effects and death in humans. No antivenin is available for cone shell envenomation.
Giant carpet anemone with wiggling Clown anemonefishes in it. I was surprised to see one of the smaller anemonefishes leaving the anemone and heading slowly away (these fish can't swim well). Eventually it settled in a depression nearby. Perhaps it knows the anemone will soon be out of water in the low spring tide? How interesting!
Spoon seagrass (mostly small but some large leaves) and Sickle seagrass. They were fresh and green and no longer heavily covered in epiphytes as on our last survey on Jul 2020. I saw many clumps of Tape seagrass, all were cropped.
leathery soft corals than I did on our last survey in Jul 2020. Both more colonies and variety of species. They seemed alright. Other cnidarians like Asparagus flowery soft corals, zoanthids, anemones were not bleaching.
Oval moon snails, some Common sea stars, one Cake sand dollar, a Strawberry cockle and signs of sand crabs and worms in the sand.
At the edge of the reef flat I saw three signs of boats striking the shore: a deep hole gouged out, piles of coral rubble on the inward side where the boat pushed up the ground, and bare sand in the hole.Terumbu Pempang Laut is one of our largest submerged reefs and located near industrial islands such as Jurong Island and Pulau Bukom.
Terumbu Pempang Laut lies next to a major shipping lane that connects to our container terminals.
What is the fate of Terumbu Pempang Laut?
Terumbu Pempang Laut is one of the existing natural shores that may be impacted by the landuse plan by the Ministry of National Development released in Jan 2013 in response to the Populations White Paper with a 6.9 million population target. The dotted margined blue areas are "Possible Future Reclamation".
The other shores impacted by this plan include Pulau Hantu, Terumbu Pempang Darat, Terumbu Pempang Tengah and Pulau Jong and Terumbu Semakau.
Let's hope Terumbu Pempang Laut stays safe until we can visit again.
Photos by others on this survey