Big, Beautiful and Bizarre: low tide highlights

Here's some incredible encounters during the last week of low spring tides. Among them were stunning creatures Big, Beautiful and Bizarre!


The most stupendous encounter so far must be this gianormous stingray seen on Changi! It was very much alive! It eventually slid off into the darkness with a flap of enormous fins and a flick of its tail.
Another unusually large marine creature was this a sea star encountered at Pulau Sekudu. It was bigger than a foot (literally)!This is Luidia maculata, an eight-armed sea star that is not commonly encountered. Those seen previously were about palm size.

On Cyrene Reef, another intriguing large sea star was encountered.Dubbed the "Blonde Knobbly", confirmation is still pending on whether it is something other than the commonly encountered Knobbly sea star.

Cyrene Reef is also one of the few intertidal areas where Cushion stars are commonly encountered. These are sea stars that resemble pillows.
The Beautiful

This gorgeous jewelled sea anemone was discovered on Cyrene Reef!It is seldom seen and is possibly Alicia sp. What a lovely name for a lovely creature.

Meanwhile, equally beautiful discoveries on the East Coast were seen. Colourful sea fans were very much alive there!These are branching colonial animals, which in turn harbour tiny snails, brittlestars, hermit crabs and other marine life! It's a colourful miniature forest.

And a cute never-seen-before sea anemone at Pulau Semakau. Identification is still pending.
The Bizarre

Some TeamSeagrass volunteers finally managed a close up look at truly cryptic sea stars at Semakau. These stars are generally well hidden under stones and in crevices.
Another odd find was this strange sea cucumber on Cyrene Reef. Identification is pending consultation with the experts.TeamSeagrassers encountered a monitor lizard having a soak among the corals in the reefs of Pulau Semakau!
Some less happy situations

Unfortunately, not all is always well with our shores.

Volunteers visited Pulau Sekudu to check on marine debris there and found several fish traps.
All kinds of fishes and crabs are trapped. Of these, only a few are considered marketable and most are thrown away half dead or dead. These issues are discussed on Slipping Through the Net. The animals were released and traps removed. Fish traps and abandoned driftnets were also seen at Cyrene Reef.

Meanwhile, there was a look at Sentosa's natural shores, right next to the ongoing reclamation for the Integrated Resort.The 'Nemo' that is usually in this large anemone wasn't to be found.

There was also coral bleaching on Sentosa's reef.Soon, massive reclamation working on the new Pasir Panjang Container Terminal will start, right next to Labrador Nature Reserve and opposite Sentosa's nature shores on Tanjung Rimau and near Cyrene Reef.

You CAN make a difference!

Volunteers are hard at work to learn more about our shores.

TeamSeagrass held a monitoring session at Pulau Semakau despite the rain.While volunteers helped map Cyrene Reef and started a programme to monitor the many marvellous Knobbly sea stars there.

Working on this submerged reef requires punctuality with regard to the tides. Here's a hilarious look at what can happen if they miss the tides on the way home ...The full sequence on LOLZCyrene.

Many shores were visited in the last six days of low tide. Here's the many blog posts of the trips by destination, from the wildsingapore google reader.

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