Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chek Jawa August Walk with NHC

I'm back at Chek Jawa boardwalk with the Naked Hermit Crabs (NHC) for the August walks! This time with two of my student councillors for their environmental exposure programme!

Joining me for the morning was a group of enthusiastic participants comprising of old friends and their children. As usual, we love to take group photos on top of the tall Jejawi tower with the wonderful good weather.
We began our walk at the mangrove boardwalk area where we can see many prop roots of the Bakau plants sticking out from the soil for stability and more importantly for breathing in an waterlogged deoxygenated substrate.

As usual the kids are amazing at spotting tiny stuffs such as mudskippers and tiny crabs. Later on, one of them pointed this huge Giant mudskipper (Periophthalmodon schlosseri) which I probably will miss as it was very still!

This Tree-climbing crab (Episesarma sp.) was quite big! Probably the kind of size that the Teochews will pickle with black sauce and vinegar as vinegar crabs.

Along the mosquito valley of the mangrove boardwalk, the kids were excited and pointing out to me all the fiddler crabs in various colours and patterns. I never fail to grow bored looking at them. So you can imagine me getting as excited as them. Haha!

Indeed more eyes make the difference. Another participant showed me his find of this juvenile Malayan water monitor (Varanus salvator) found at the mouth of the mud lobster mound. This makes me wonder do these monitors really also share home with the mud lobsters?

Jessie, one of my student councillors tagged along with my group to observe the guided walk. Coincidentally, one of her kindergarden teacher was also in my group and she immediately could recognise Jessie at the start. Wow! That's the power of the memory of teachers.

And here's a nice photograph of Jessie sharing nature with the children along the coastal boardwalk.

As the tide was coming in very quickly, we could be able to also see some of the marine life such as this large school of fishes (not too obvious in this photo). We also saw a huge jellyfish!

On the way back to House number 1, we saw this Golden Orb Web Spider (Nephila maculata) with its huge web. We stopped by to take nice photographs of this rather still and "cooperative" spider. 

Here is a closer look at this spider. Isn't it pretty?

Back at house no. 1, the children and even the adults drew and wrote some of their thoughts and artwork as our guestbook. Here is Timothy with his masterpiece of him in the mangroves! We also have other guests who drew fantastically for us. Ley Kun will post them up soon on the Naked Hermit Crabs blog

Here is a photo of Ley Kun, our mama crab with her group. And of course, Janet who is another of my student councillor tagged and learnt a great deal from her!

As requested by the ladies, I look a photo of them in front of the House no. 1 with our frog island, Pulau Sekudu at the background. We look forward to see these two girls in action as an OJT (on the job training) guide when they return later in the year.

When we walked out of the gate of Chek Jawa, a family of wild boars greeted us! My group wished to see them and their wish has been granted. Haha!

I find it amusing how some of the wild boards sniff and push the backside of their siblings. Really cute I must say!

While waiting for the van to arrive, Ley Kun kindly shared with the ladies about rubber tapping using the rubber tree. At this point, one of the other van drivers came over to show a live demonstration of the process! Wow, it's my first time seeing it! Thank you so much!!

It is intriguing seeing how the droplets of the latex sap seep out of the trunk and trickle downwards.

Looking forward to the September walks which I think we will have a lot of children since it's within the school holidays! :-)

More photos of the trip here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/koksheng/archives/date-taken/2011/08/13/

1 comment:

ria said...

What a wonderful trip! I'm so sorry I missed it!

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