waking up at 5+ was no easy feat.. but it was rewarding as the sunrise was really beautiful..
Sponges! like what you see in spongebob square pants. It is actually an animal, a simple one though. These organisms eat by filtering the water for plankton. Some sponges are actually poisonous so avoid handling them with your bare hands. With its natural defense mechanisms and a constant flow of oxgenated water through it, sponges are actually home to many tiny creatures as well!
Raise your hand up if you are enjoying yourself..!
That's my group- spiderconch crossing the seagrass lagoon. Do not belittle this patch of seagrass..! With plenty of shelter and food, the seagrass meadow is actually an important habitat for organisms to lay their eggs and juveniles to develop into adults.
Common seastar (Archaster typicus)
Yes they are mating! The male being the smaller one, lies on top of the female one. Despite doing this, their reproductive organs actually do not meet..! Seastar practise external fertilisation, where their sperms and eggs are released outside silmultaneously. This position is to increase their chances of fertilisation. Seastar also have remarkable regenerative power. They can regenerate their lost limbs as long as the central disk is not damaged. But that does not mean you can pluck off their arms q: Unlike human beings, they use sea water instead of blood so do not take them out of water for too long.
Those tiny things sticking out are their tubefeet. Seastar travel by using tubefeet.
These tiny shells are homes to the hermit crabs! So try not to pick up shells in future even though they are empty. Hermit crab changes shells every now and then as it grows. Without shells, they are vulnerable to their predators and external factors.
The carpet anemones (Stichodactyla sp.) are among the largest of sea anemones. They have stinging tentacles and eats small animals! It can inject toxins at the organisms and move them to its central mouth. It does not have an anus so it actually has to spit out indigestible wates from its previous meal before it can consume the next one.
& we saw nudibranches(:
Nudibranchs also mean 'naked gills'. these sea slugs are really colourful. They breathe using the flower-like feathery external gill found on their backs. The pair of tentacles found at the other end is known as the rhinophores. They are believed to detech chemicals in the hunt for their prey and mates. As they have lost their shells as adults, they inject poisonous toxins to protect themselves and tis is warned by their bright colours. Despite being small, these beautiful little creatures are actually carnivores! They feed on immobile creatures like zoanthids, sponges and eggs of other organisms.
This is another nuidibranch. It is actually a fierce eater as it eats other slugs from the same species! Since slugs are haemophrodites, they have both the male and female reproductive organs hence fertilises each other. However for the gymnodoris, seeing its same species means food and sex for them! So when they meet each other, they try to fertilise and eat each other! Eventually the loser will be eaten up and the winner will perform the function of the mother to give birth.
A ferocious predator, the noble volute seeks on other shells using its siphons and suffocates its prey with its huge muscular foot and wait till the exhausted clams to open out their shells to breathe (which may take several days)! It then sticks its proboscis in and consumes it with its radula(tongue).
Boulder coral (Family Favidae)
or is it knob coral? (Favia sp.) X:
The above is a hard coral. Each hole on the hard coral has a coral animal (known as polyps). These animals build their own house using calcium carbonate. & they are actually carnivores that feed on planktons.
Ocellated sea cucumber (Stichopus ocellatus)
This species of sea cucumber do not eject sticky threads for defense, but it may eject its internal organs which is even worse! When removed from water for too long, it becomes limp and may disintegrate. But it is still able to reverse the process if it is not too badly 'melted'.
Moon snail (Family Naticidae)
Looks pretty, but it is a fierce predator. Unlike noble volute, even if the bivales refuse to open up their shells, it can secrete an acid to soften their shell. & it uses ts radula(tongue) to further create a hole so as to feed on them! So next time when you see empty shells with hole at its end, you know what has happened huh.
Scallop (Chlamys sp.)
Bivalves(two part shells) feed by taking in water and filter it for planktons. It can 'swim' by flapping its valves.
After the walk, we went to the southern most end of Singapore where the public can access. The sea water is really blue and beautiful here. Agnes and July even mention of swimming and snorkelling here which I think is pretty cool aha.
Overall it was a great trip and again an eyeopening experience. Thanks everyone!(: