Ling Ling shares a delightful report of her encounters at Cyrene. And I intrude in italics in her text:
Cyrene reef first came to my mind when I was planning for our tri-monthly Central Nature Reserve volunteer gathering. I wanted our ‘terrestrial’ volunteers to know that there are other valuable habitats in Singapore.
Although this is my second time to Cyrene, every trip is a surprise to me. It is beyond my comprehension that we can actually walk on a reef that is submerged most of the time and only become visible during low tide.
Family Faviidae! These corals come in a bewildering variety of patterns and colours!)
common sea stars mating and there are a few of these on the reef.
leathery soft coral. You can see some of the tiny polyps sticking out in the part of the colony that is still submerged. While on the exposed parts, the polyps are retracted, leaving a smooth leathery surface that does resemble the skin of a chicken drumstick. I never thought of that!)
One of my favourites and these will retreat into a hole when they sensed moment or vibration.(Ria: My favourite too! They are tiny white fan worms!)
Some of the volunteers have never been to a reef before and this is their first time. Some will exclaimed excitedly when they spot something and some filled with quiet curiosity. Everyone is paying attention to every single creatures and this just made my day. I am happy that they came to this reef and know that we have SO MUCH in our home and this reef is truly uniquely Singapore.
Only you and I can help to protect Cyrene reef so that your children and mine can enjoy and take care of them too.
“For in the end we will conserve only what we love. We will love only what we understand. We will understand what we are taught.” Baba Dioum
Woon Ling Ling, 29, works at the National Parks Board and is the Volunteer Co-ordinator at the Central Nature Reserve. She loves nature and is an avid plant lover.