Monday, November 30, 2009

From Tiny To Giant @ Pulau Hantu Dives.....

We have had a good visibility @ Pulau Hantu yesterday! About 5m at least!

Back again at the dive site with The Hantu Bloggers on their monthly dive at the island.

This time round, I get to see stuffs as tiny as a rice grain to a giant! The tiniest one I came across was this little brown speck on the Sea Fan that I have no idea of what is it. It was moving pretty fast through.

and the giant is a Giant Clam! :P 1st time seeing one at Pulau Hantu underwater for me! And of course, I have informed Mei Lin, aka the Giant Clam girl about this sighting. I will try to map out the location for her so that she can find it and tag it for her research.

Also I get to see the Allied cowrie that I was tasked to find.

Of course, there are other interesting sightings too. Marcel managed to see a Stonefish just right below our boat! Yike!!! He also managed to see Octopus in both dives!

Alas, I only get to see Octopus' cousin, a little Cuttlefish. It was trying to look like part of a sponge it was on. So Cute!

With good vis, I can alway take fish pics. Here's two Copperbanded Butterflyfish.

Glad to see the Tiger-tailed Seahorse again!

and its cousin, the long black Pipefish that looks like a twig!

Came across this thingy.....I have no idea what is it! Could it be a Soft coral?

Quite a few Flatworms too!

And lots of nudibranch!!!....

A pair of Cuthona nudibranch (Cuthona sibogae)
was the first nudibranch sighting for the day. Looks like they were enjoying their lunch of Hydroids!

Not far from the pair above, was this Voodoo doll-like nudibranch, which could be a Bornella stellifer.

A tiny Tambja nudibranch (Tambja sp.) on the Bryopsis algae.

Another tiny nudibranch would be these Dermatobranchus nudibranch (Dermatobranchus sp.)

It has been sometimes since I saw a Ocellated nudibranch (Phyllidia ocellata).

Wah.....a fat and juicy looking Black-margined nudibranch (Glossodoris atromarginata).

The Reliable Chromodoris nudibranch (Chromodoris fidelis) looks like that they are in season as I saw at least 5 of them.

Last but not least, was this nudibranch that was found near the Seahorse sighting. Looks like a juvenile Bolland's Hypselodoris nudibranch (Hypselodoris cf. bollandi).

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Gecko For Lunch.....

I was shooting this beautiful Oriental Whip Snake.....

when suddenly it made a forward jerk. I thought that it was pissed off with this "paparazzi" shooting away. I jerked back and then I realised that it had caught a Gecko! Oh.....lunch time!

then it moved away and climbed higher up the bushes as if it was afraid that I would steal its lunch. :p

the Gecko did not struggle for long before the snake's venom kicked in and was slowly swallowed head first.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Great Day Out At Our Nature Places.....

I was out the whole day on Saturday visiting our nature spots.

In the morning, met up with AA heading to the North to have a walk at Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve. As there's no bus alighting at the Reserve on Saturday, we trekked through Kranji Nature Trail to get to the Reserve.

Along the trail, we came across these;

Then we came to the boardwalk along the trail. I was looking at the seaward side when suddenly I heard a sound of something diving/dropping into the water behind. I turned and checked, but did not see anything until I noticed some bubbles coming up to the water surface.

So I waited.....then there was this little head popping up underneath the water!

It's an OTTER! Finally I get to see one! :o) So CUTEEEEE!

Here's it showing its teeth when it noticed us on the boardwalk.

After which, it just ignored us and continue diving in and out of the water. We spent quite sometimes observing it. It caught a fish and after sometimes, disappearing into the deeper part of the mangroves.

Haha.....and by the time we reached the Reserve, I had little time to walk around as I had to rush off. So I just make my way to the main bridge and just before the bridge, came across this beautiful Oriental Whip Snake.

And after Sungei Buloh, I was on to another exploration of the day. This time to one of our Southern islands, Pulau Hantu, for an intertidal trip.

The tide, however, was not going down much as predicted. Thus, we spent most of our times at the high shore.

On the Solitary Fan Green Seaweeds (Avrainvillea sp.), several such Sea Slug can be found on them. These could be Costasiella slug (Costasiella sp.).

We also came across a few of these Anemones. Some of them were very sensitive to my light and retreated into the sand very fast when my torch shine on them. We were wondering if this could be the Anemone that was named after this island, Pulau Hantu?

Came across this Gymnodoris nudibranch. Looks like Gymnodoris citrina.

And the mission of the trip was accomplished when the Giant clam was spotted for our Giant clam researcher, ML.

And the highlight of the trip is this Basket Star found by James! Wow.....and this is my 3rd time seeing one after Big Sisters and Keppel Bay.

It was a great day with great sightings!