07 August 2011

Sharing Cyrene with CEOs NParks and URA

Last week, I had the pleasure of sharing Cyrene with two CEOs!
We had a great time exploring Cyrene's rich marine life!

CEO NParks Mr Poon Hong Yuen  was on the first trip. Sharp-eyed participants helped find special marine life such as the  Pentaceraster sea star (Pentaceraster mammilatus). This sea star was first discovered on Cyrene and is a new record for Singapore.
Among the other exciting finds, an octopus! There's a rush to have a look at it. Fortunately, the little beast was quite obliging and allowed everyone to get a glimpse of it.
Also with the team were members of the NParks Board. As well as key members of NParks' National Biodiversity Center who organised these trips and shared lots of interesting stories with everyone.
A few days later, I joined the same NParks team to share Cyrene with CEO URA Mr Ng Lang, who is great at spotting marine life. He found and gently caught a swimming crab to show everyone.
As usual, among the first things to greet us on the shore are lots and lots of large Knobbly sea stars (Protoreaster nodosus)!
On this trip, we managed to show everyone 'Nemo'! The False clown anemonefish (Amphiprion ocellaris) lives in the Giant carpet anemone (Stichodactyla gigantea) and is quite commonly seen on our shores, including Cyrene. But a bit shy and hard to spot at low tide.
On the sandy shores, we find several of the intriguing Grey bonnet snails (Phalium glaucum). These snails eat sand dollars, which of course, are found in the sand banks...haha...lame marine joke.
Cyrene remains rich with marine life despite the many pressures around it.  During our trip, the huge dredger was still at work nearby. Dredging has been going on near Cyrene for some months now.
Cyrene is located in the middle of the industrial triangle yet has marvellous seagrass meadows, sandy shores and coral reefs! It was a treat to be able to share these with the CEO and staff of NParks and URA!
Thank you to the team from NParks' National Biodiversity Center for organising these trips! And to the participants for spotting so many interesting marine life and being so encouraging.

More about these trips on the wild shores of singapore blog here and here.

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