Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Chek Jawa Coastal Clean-up 2006 - Things to note!

Hello Chek Jawa Coastal Clean-up 2006 Participants! Here's a general guide on how to get to Pulau Ubin, and a bit of what we are going to do.

This is the Changi Village Ferry Terminal. Go to the basement area
to queue for the bumboat to Pulau Ubin ($2 one way).
The boat ride takes around 15min.

Our meeting point at Pulau Ubin Jetty. Be there at 1.15pm!

The NParks Info Kiosk is the last toilet stop before we head to Chek Jawa!

At Chek Jawa, we'll attend a briefing session in the container next to House #1, before heading off to our individual sections to start work.
Section 1 entrance

Punai Hut on the right, trailhead where Choon Beng is standing.

Groups 2 and 3 will further divide the beach into 2 parts.
The dividing marker is a tall coconut tree.

Section 2 and 3 trailhead

The marker coconut tree.

The end of Section 2.

Section 3

What are some of the trash you can expect??


Don't forget to clear the trash off the mangrove roots!


Pick up the litter, but not the algae lying around (the green stuff on the sand)!

Large plywood crates and pieces are taken out too.




Section 1's litter

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Tah Kah Kee Awards ceremony

Attended the 25th anniversary dinner of World Scientific Publishing last night, which also coincided with the Tan Kah Kee Postgraduate Scholarship Award ceremony. Unlike other awards dinners, was quite looking forward to this one, as I knew the recipients are all people who are active in and passionate about community service (it's one of the requirements of the scholarship). I wasn't disappointed. Though we didn't know one another, my dinner companions were genuinely warm and friendly, and we had some interesting conversational topics, ranging from youths in politics, to voluntary social work in London, to...hehe....coastal development in S'pore.

Found out that out of 124 applicants, 9 scholars were selected this year. Wow....I'm extremely honoured to be part of this 'select group', and also extremely gratified that nature conservation is considered a community service! There! It's recognised that taking care of the environment is considered as benefiting society, and not just about a bunch of rabid greenies out to destroy all development and standards of living as we know it. And THAT, is something I'm most proud of...

Friday, July 07, 2006

More photos from Xplore! training dives

Went out with the trainee Xplore! guides one weekend in February '06 to Kusu Island. Saturday was tough- winds, heavy surge, bouts of seasickness, and for some people, a close encounter with a beacon :). Nevertheless, snuck into the lagoon for a look at what comes out of hiding at high tide.

Outside on the reef though, numerous jewels await. Sunday did not disappoint, the water was relatively clear, and we had so many exciting sightings!

Taking in the sights...

Huge nudibranch! About the size of my palm!

Glad to get a sharp shot of the white allied cowrie- one of my fave critters!

Guess what this is? It's the feeding proboscis of a worm!
It extends out of the burrow probing for tasty treats.

Very pretty nudibranch- Bornella anguilla, feeding on a hydroid.

The sweet-looking tiny yellow nudi makes an appearance again.
See how large the sediment particles are in comparison!


Close-up of an icon sea-star

The feather stars here love to perch on the seafans

A sea whip goby stays still long enough for me to get the shot

The gorgonian sawblade shrimp proves a bit more difficult...

And you can always count on seeing a phyllid nudibranch.
Was it feeding on ascidians?

Ever wondered what's in the Kusu lagoon at high tide?

Quite a few of us are already familiar with the sights and sounds of Kusu lagoon during a lowtide ReefWalk. While out on a Reef Xplore! training session, decided to check out if the lagoon looks any different underwater....

Chromodoris lineonata perched on a piece of rubble (Depth: 0.9m)

You can barely see it due to the murky waters, but there's a goby hiding among the rocks!