Monday, February 25, 2008

An afternoon at the ridge

Remember the last post I blogged about Semakau? The first photo features Pulau Jong. Here again is another view of Pulau Jong, from far.

Where were we this time? We spent the late afternoon at Kent Ridge, which is within our school. So what can you find in NUS?

Kent Ridge holds a secondary forest which is known as Adinandra belukar. Adinandra belukar is defined as a species-poor, anthropogenic heath forest dominated by tiup tiup.

Look at the dead tree on the right?

Look closer, there are birds resting.

Being a secondary forest, there will be remains of the rubber trees planted in the past. This photo shows the fruit of the rubber tree.

Alex was the plant expert around and he was collecting leaf specimens of plants he was unsure back to the lab so he can identify them and know Kent Ridge holds such flora.

Siyang was attracted to this ant harvesting nectar from the flowers. Alex shares this plant is at least from the genus mikania.

We had a few bird encounters too. This is a hill myna (Gracula religiosa). According to Chek Jawa online guide, Hill mynas eat mostly fruits, foraging for these high in the trees. They are particularly fond of figs. But they also snack on nectar, insects and small lizards. Hill mynas rarely land on the ground and prefer to stay in forested areas. They don't walk, and instead hop along branches.

Hill mynas can mimic other birds, and even whistle tunes and imiate humans. This makes them a favourite target for the caged bird trade.

Another bird we spotted was this drongo.

Another view of the beautiful drongo.

This is a Black-naped Oriole (Oriolus chinensis). According to Sungei Buloh online guide, Black-naped Orioles enjoy a wide menu of plants and animals. They are fond of fruit and berries, particularly figs. Black-naped Orioles rarely descend to the ground. They forage high in trees and usually say within the canopy. Nevertheless, they are not birds of the deep forest. Originally from coastal woodlands and mangroves, they have adapted to cultivated areas and parks and gardens.

Black-naped Orioles are not at risk and rank among the top 10 most common residents in Singapore. They have adjusted very well to humans and are found even in the city. They arrived in Singapore from Indonesia and became established in the 1920's-30's.

As we continued to explore the ridge...

Alex pointed out this tree...

and on top, there are creepers over the crown of that tree. Alex shares this is Entada spiralis. Click here to find out why it is called spiralis. The flowers shown here does not belong to the creeper. They belong to the tree (refer to previous photo) being covered by the creeper.

On yet another dead fall, we saw pigeon like birds. On a closer look, they are indeed pigeons. Rather, they are the uncommon pink neck green pigeons.

Also on the same dead fall was a pair of the hill myna.

Although common in Singapore in the past, the Hill mynahs are now considered rare residents and are listed as CITES II. Besides Pulau Ubin, these birds are also found in Pulau Tekong Besar, the central catchment forest and the Singapore Botanic Gardens.

A closer look at the pink neck green pigeon. Do note that only the males have the pink neck. Pink-necked Green Pigeons eat mainly fruits. Their colourful attire allows them to blend perfectly in the foliage of fruiting trees.

Towards the end of the trip, we found huge boulders with signs of marine evidences.

Look at the barnacles. They are evidences that someone took these huge boulders from the seashore up to the ridge. Looks like I can't run away from marine habitat. Haha.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...