Monday, November 29, 2010

It's A Slugful Day At Pulau Hantu.....

Went diving with The Hantu Bloggers at Pulau Hantu yesterday. This time round we did a special full day 3 day dives and 1 night dive. Usually full day trip only happen on the blog's anniversary. We did 2 dives each at the west reef and at the South jetty.

And this trip turned out to be a slugful day! least for me lah :p. We came across about 16 different kinds of Sea Slugs and yet again, some new sightings for me! :o) Highlights from the other divers including 2 Sharks, one big Blue Spotted Fantail Stingray, a Yellow-lipped Sea Krait and a nudibranch that I have not seen before! Wow!!!!

And oh.....the visibility was good too! About 3-4m at least!

Okay, here come the Sea Slugs sightings (with most of them Nudibranch!!!);

Spotted 2 Emma nudibranch (Hypselodoris emma) on the shallow part of the reef. Here's one the them.

This looks like a young Bolland's Hypselodoris nudibranch (Hypselodoris cf. bollandi). It was tiny, about 1cm long.

The Reliable Chromodoris nudibranch (Chromodoris fidelis) are still in season. Spotted quite a few around.

Some Gymnodoris nudibranch (Gymnodoris spp.)

A tiny Tambja nudibranch (Tambja sp.) wandering around.....

And nearby the Tambja, ML spotted a Dermatobranchus nudibranch (Dermatobranchus sp.)

JG spotted this on the night dive. It's a Janolus nudibranch (Janolus sp.) This is the second time that I have seen this nudibranch at Hantu. The first time was in 2008 during The Hantu Bloggers' 4th anniversary and haha.....that Janolus nudibranch was also spotted by JG too!

On one of the jetty pillars, spotted this Red-lined Flabellina nudibranch (Flabellina rubrolineata).

First time seeing this Cratena nudibranch? (Cratena sp.) underwater. Have seen them during intertidal trips to Beting Bronok and Changi.

Oh my! The Cuthona nudibranch (Cuthona sibogae) are in season! They were everywhere! Here's a mating pair!

Found this tiny tiny I think is an aeolid nudibranch. It was moving pretty fast and seen to have a very long dark-purplish oral tentacles with some green orangey cerata. Hehe.....can see its eyespots too!

A closer look at it. It also has some white markings on its mantle. A new nudibranch sighting for me!

Found this during night dive. Looks like a Notobryon nudibranch (Notobryon wardi). Have seen a similar looking one before on a intertidal trip to Big Sisters Island.

Once again, found the unknown Doto nudibranch again. Haha.....still trying very hard to get a clearer picture of this nudibranch. :p

ML spotted this tiny Doto looking nudibranch on a Hydroid on the night dive! This is the 2nd new nudibranch sighting for me from the dives!

And here's the 3rd new nudibranch sighting for me!

When spotted this yellowish lump on a pink Candy Hydroid, I was like what the heck and WOW! It looks bizarre! Then it moved abit.....

It's a nudibranch! Probably another species of the Doto nudibranch (Doto sp.)? I don't know.

Here's a close-up. Can see the brownish reticulated markings on the body. The Rhinophores I think are on the left of the pic.

And lastly, the 4th new sightings (not nudibranch but still a Sea Slug) for me is this

Found 3 of these on the substrate moving pretty fast! They were about the size of a rice grain! They look like the Four-spine Siphopteron (Siphopteron quadrispinosum). Their relatives being the Bubble snails, Headshield Slug etc in the same Order Cephalaspidea.

So there you have it, 16 different kinds of Sea Slugs! Isn't Pulau Hantu AMAZING??? :o)

Of course besides the slugs, there are other creatures that Hantu offers!


Big Icon Seastars and plenty of tiny Brittle stars!

Sea Pen!

Allied Cowries on Sea Fan and Sea Whips!

Tiger Cowrie!

And another "Tiger" sighting is the usual Tiger-tailed Seahorse. :p

lastly, found this 3cm long Seahorse hanging onto some Hydroid-like stuff during the night dive. Could it be a young Tiger-tailed Seahorse?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Good, The Bad And The NOT Ugly @ Little Sisters Island And Pulau Jong.....

BWV ReefFriends conducted 2 reef surveys this week. One at Little Sisters island on Sunday and another at Pulau Jong today!

So on Sunday, we carried out the reef survey at Little Sisters. And here's where the bad comes in.....Bad visibility, weather and strong currents! The vis was about 1m, we got rained out during the second dive and encountered strong currents where basically, I had to hold on to rubbles to lay the transect tapes!

Here are some pics taken during the dives;

Some hard corals were still bleaching but most of them are likely on the road to recovery!


Purplish Lace Stick corals.....

Arms of a Featherstar/Crinoid.

Little Featherstar/Crinoid on a Sea Fan!

While on another Sea Fan, it's a Basket Star!

Only came across a Phyllid nudibranch (Phyllidiella sp.) and a Black-margined nudibranch (Glossodoris atromarginata).

And today, we went out to Pulau Jong. We are blessed with the GOOD! Good weather, slack currents and Good VISIBILITY! About 6m at least!

Check out the Vis !!!

And here what we saw today;

A Mushroom coral with its stalk still attached to the substrate!

Not sure what is the ID of this hard coral. Anyone would like to shed some lights for this one?

Pebble coral (Astreopora sp.)?

Anemone coral with polyps that that look like tiny little flowers!

Pretty Corallimorphs.

Haha.....Zoanthids feeling blue? :p

The stars today are the Icon Seastar and the Cushion Star!

Little shrimp on the Sea Fan!

And also on a Sea Fan is this Allied Cowrie!

Whereas this Allied Cowrie preferred to be on some greens!

At one end of a transect tape, there was this Tiger Cowrie! It was about 8cm long! Happy to see this rare cowrie in our waters again!

A Blue Dragon nudibranch (Pteraeolidia ianthina).

Various Phyllid nudibranch!

A Gymnodoris nudibranch (Gymnodoris sp.)

A Cuthona nudibranch (Cuthona sibogae)!

Found a couple of these nudibranch (Doto sp.?) which I have seen during last month Pulau Hantu dives. And both have egg ribbons nearby!

And thanks to ML, I get to see this Girdled Glossodoris nudibranch (Glossodoris cincta) in our waters finally!

So there you are, all the NOT ugly (i.e. pretty and beautiful) creatures that we came across on both trip! Well.....except this one.....:p

A Toadfish!

Just kidding, it is still a CUTE looking fish! Awwwww..... :p