Saturday, July 7, 2012

Happy slugging at Jong

Today's trip brings me to one of the southern island's reef.
The set off time was later in the morning at 06:30, more sleeping time for me.
When the team reached the island, the sun had already risen and it was bright.
The amphibious landing means getting water to as high as knee level or even above it.
Having gone through my 3rd amphibious landing, I find it quite fun and the water is cooling. How wish I could take a dip.
Back to the field trip...

This southern island is visited annually by the team. It is a rocky reef with dead and live corals growing on a large area. I got to see some how some of the corals look like when they are submerged. Usually I see them exposed and their polyps retracted.

The first coral I saw is the Broad feathery soft coral. What caught my attention was the polyps, moving and curling at their own pace.
Broad feathery soft coral
There were a few Flowery disk corals (Turbinaria peltata). I even saw it at our landing zone and had to be very careful on where I am stepping.
Flowery disk coral
A submerged Pinwheel leathery coral (Lobophytum sp.) displays its pretty polys swaying in the outgoing tide to me.
Pinwheel leathery coral
I get to see the exposed, semi exposed and submerged form of the Omelette leathery coral (Sacrophyton sp.). Now I know how these animals look like when they in water.
Some polyps still retracted.
With polyps fully extended in water.
I heard that the leathery corals are not as abundant as they used to be. I can image seeing leathery corals every everywhere on this reef. Hope they will stay in the current state long.

Is this the leathery sea fan? Wasn't able to get a close look at this as the tide was rising and we were about to pack up and leave.
 Leathery sea fan?
This is actually a sponge. I thought it is a coral. This is the yellow pot sponge (Rhabdastrella globostellata). I saw a few of this sponge on the area I covered.
Yellow pot sponge
There were a lot of clapping from the snapping shrimp on every shore trip and I finally know why. Today I witnessed a snapping shrimp trying to pull off some hairy seaweed (Bryopsis sp.) using it's snapping pincer and it resulted in the snapping sound. Ah...! However I think sometimes the snapping sound was because the snapping shrimp is trying to get rid of other visiting marine and land guests.

Talking about shrimp, I helped to collect one shrimp today and that is one of the very few shrimps I saw today.
Today we saw quite a number of slugs, all rather small.
Black-margined nudibranch (Glossodoris atromarginata)
Wolly leaf slug (Elysia cf. verrucosa)
Tiny armina nudibranch (Dermatobranchus sp.)
Chromodoris nudibranch?
Pimply phyllid nudibranch (Phyllidiella pustulosa)
Pimly phyllid nudibranch (failed underside)
As the tide comes in, there were some brownish unknown layer floating on the surface. Some have formed strings. They look sad and disturbing to me.
To end off this post, let me show you an octopus in static action. I think the octopus was out trying to look for food as it kept wrapping around rocks and coral rubbles. To "read" the image correctly, you have to do it from left to right, row by row (you can click the image to enlarge it).
Every shore and reef is special to me.

Read about what other's saw during this trip:
- Kok Sheng on corals, more slugs and a giant clam.
- Ria and her first sighting of a seahorse.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...