09 February 2009

Dragon, damsel and shrimp&goby on Pulau Semakau

These wonderful photos of the fabulous flyers on Pulau Semakau were kindly shared by Tang Hung Bun. He and Eric Gibert discovered these and others during our trip to Pulau Semakau yesterday.This one is a male Teinobasis ruficollis. I love the big green eyes and bright pink body! It's almost a cartoon damselfly. Apparently it's rarely seen on the mainland. So it's nice to know this delightful creature is found on Pulau Semakau.
This one is a male Gynacantha sp. Such a beautiful green jewel! It is also considered rare in Singapore. Wow! This is quite exciting!

Tang and Eric are really amazing with these creatures. The Other Eric, our Book photographer, was sharing how these two gentlemen could not only capture the animals by camera, but also catch them by hand! The Dragonfly Guys also have awesome nets on nifty sticks that look like Jedi-knight light sabers.

Not only that, Tang also spotted this seashore special while waiting for us to get back from our wanderings on the far shores. It's a shrimp goby and its partner shrimp! He also shared this great shot of the fascinating pair.The shrimp goby lives in the same burrow with a snapping shrimp. With keener eyesight, the goby keeps a look-out while the shrimp busily digs out and maintains their shared home. The shrimp is literally constantly in touch with the goby with at least one of its antennae always on the goby. When the goby darts into the burrow, the shrimp is right behind it! From the "Guide to Gobies of Singapore" by Helen Larsen and Kelvin K. P. Lim, the shrimp goby appears to be the Saddled prawn-goby (Cryptocentrus maudae). I saw this pair once on Labrador, Marcus saw it on Sentosa, and Andy did a video clip of one at Labrador too. But all the gobies we saw were a lot smaller. The one that Tang shared from Pulau Semakau looks more like the goby in the Goby Guidebook.

WOW! This is so cool.

Thank you to Tang for finding all these fascinating animals and sharing his photos for this blog. And soon (after I get through with the upcoming field trips) they'll be on the wild fact sheets too.

Please do feel free to share your sightings for the wild fact sheets. The more we share, the more we all learn together.

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