Chek Jawa is a special place in many Singaporean's heart. We almost lost this shore to development more than 10 years ago and are heartened to know that it is still around today for many to enjoy and appreciate. For me, it is my first field site as I did my UROPs project in 2007 studying the mass mortality and recruitment of organisms.
mass death event in 2007. Today, we see the coral rubble very slowly coming back to life.
One can still find hard corals, soft corals and sponges interspersed around the entire area. However the sponge count seems to have dropped since mid of last year.
Pore hard corals (Porites sp.). All of them are doing well and are not bleaching.
Disk coral (Turbinaria sp.) and Boulder sandpaper coral (Psammocora sp.).
Grooved brain coral (Symphyllia sp.), probably Symphyllia recta. Many thanks to Danwei for the id! I believe it's our first sighting of the brain coral in the north!
Sea slug forum, they are probably much more common than realised, it is very cryptically coloured and often hidden in crevices and beneath the coral blocks to avoid heavy fish predation.
Blue dragon nudibranch (Pteraeolidia ianthina). The scientific name of this slug is currently being reviewed.
Flowery soft corals (Family Nephtheidea) that have grown to occupy a small stretch of the coral rubble. This reminded us of Tuas!
Barrel sponges (Xestospongia testudinaria) that seem to be doing well! Though they are common on pristine reefs in the southern reefs, we hardly see them on our northern reefs.
Knobbly sea stars (Protoreaster nodosus). The one on the bottom right of the collage was found on seagrass!
Biscuit stars (Goniodiscaster scaber) are the most abundant on our survey today! They can be both big and small. And here we have a photobombing Fan-bellied filefish (Monacanthus chinensis).
Cake sea star (Anthenea aspera)! Cake sea stars come in different colours and patterns.
Scaly sea stars (Nepanthia belcheri) but actually it is a large Crown sea star (Asterina coronata)! In fact it is the largest crown sea star I've ever seen.
Estuarine seahorses (Hippocampus kuda). I am glad to find one on our trip today!
Velcro crab (Camposcia retusa).
It is named as a Velcro crab as it has the ability of the velcro to
attached bits and pieces of stuffs on its body so that it can be well
camouflaged with the surrounding, especially when motionless.
Spotted hermit crab (Dardanus
sp.). We seldom see them on our northern shores.
Frilly sea anemones (Phymanthus sp.). I only saw one today.
Snaky sea anemone (Macrodactyla doreensis) is also uncommon on our northern shores. They are named snakey anemones because of their snake-like tentacles that tend to curl.
More photos of the trip on my facebook album: