23 March 2015

How is Pasir Ris marinelife after the mass fish deaths?

How is Pasir Ris doing after the mass fish deaths? I decided to have a look today, the first morning low spring tide of the year.
Many interesting surprises like this nudibranch!


We often see strange nudibranchs on our northern shores like Pasir Ris. Thanks to Gavin for spotting this one (we later noticed several other similar nudis). Here's a closer look at the nudi.
Gavin spots this strange crab which I don't know.
A view of a similar crab from the front.
The most common crab on the shore are Stone crabs, mostly small to medium sized. With many tiny to small Flower crabs.
In pools of water, a little Porter crab under a leaf moving in the 'wrong direction'. There were also some tiny shrimps and tiny to small hermit crabs. The clicks of tiny to small snapping shrimps were all around.
In the pools, there were a few tiny gobies like this one.
On the sand bars, there were Orange fiddler crabs and lots of tiny Sand bubbler crabs. In the seagrasses there were tiny Sentinel crabs.
There were a few Plain sand stars and some small Bottlebrush brittle stars among the seagrasses and seaweeds. I didn't see any sea urchins on this trip.
I saw one small Garlic bread sea cucumber buried in the sand. And lots of Ball sea cucumbers. Gavin noticed a tiny sea cucumber that might be a young Ball sea cucumber. I didn't see any other kinds of sea cucumbers.
Oh, we saw two Geographic sea hares half buried in the sand.
There were also pink 'bee hoon' strings of eggs, probably laid by the sea hares. I saw a few Spiral melongena snails and also their egg cases.
I saw a few small Tiny carpet anemones, and several Striped sand anemones and Striped bead anemones. I usually see a wider variety and larger number of sea anemones on this shore.
I a few Common cerianthids. One had a with its tentacles retracted into its tube, surrounded by tiny Black phoronid worms that live with cerianthids.
There were small to medium sized clusters of Zebra coral on the rocks, as well as a sprinkling of Cave corals.
There wasn't much sponges encrusting the rocks. Here's one Rainbow sponge, with a bouquet of Glassy branching bryozoans, which are animals too!
peanut worm! Also a few bristleworms. I didn't see any flatworms. Gavin shared  how he had observed glowing worms during his night surveys of the shore.
The seagrass meadows looked well in the muted sunrise.
The meadows are dominated by Spoon seagrasses which were growing densely, green and not bleaching.
I also came across a small patch of Hairy spoon seagrass. There was a bloom of Ulva seaweed, and small bunchs of Gracilaria seaweed.
As we were heading home, we stopped by to speak with the many fishermen cast netting on the beach.
They said the catch wasn't that good, but they were catching some crabs and fishes.
Some of the fishes in the bucket of one of the netters. Gavin said he had done some cast netting the week before and did not catch many fishes.
We only saw 2 dead fishes today (spotted by Gavin). A decomposing catfish on the high shore, and a dead sting ray. I didn't see any sting rays during the mass fish deaths. We also saw a few dead horseshoe crabs.
Today, I saw a smaller variety of marine life compared to my last low spring trip here in May 2014. This shore appeared to be livelier during my trips in Aug 2013 and Jul 2012.

We also saw many activities that impact the water quality at Pasir Ris. More about this in a separate blog post.

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