Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A Magical Journey to Cyrene

What would it have been if not for Melvin’s magic? Ria believes he has the power to keep bad weather at bay. Yesterday, we had a couple of Cyrene newbies joining us from the Facebook group, as well as from BWV and Nparks. The weaving of Melvin’s magic, coupled with beginners’ luck of the newbies, certainly prevented the sumatras (I learnt something new!) from spilling a drop while we were on Cyrene.

We first landed on the sand bar where our visitors were first exposed to what lies beneath the sand. Sure looks like there is nothing that Ling Ling was pointing to in the sand, but wait...Sand dollars! Ooh! Common sand stars! Ooh ooh!

The Star Trackers were also out doing their project today, and some of us help plant the flags for easy spotting. Cyrene is like the Hollywood Walk of Fame, except that the visitors got to see these star celebrities up close and personal. Of course, they can’t resist taking pictures of these knobblies!

We saw plenty of crabs (soldier crabs, a brown egg crab and hairy crabs) and a moulting as well! As we humans get larger, we grow out of our clothes which can’t expand...and so do crabs! Here Gabriel is holding a moulting which was left behind. The crab is soft and vulnerable for a short period after moulting and begins to rebuild a new tougher shell.

See the storm brewing in the background? Melvin’s magic is still holding out.

Our final stop was in an area with an abundance of the leathery soft corals. We also spotted octopuses, crabs, brittle stars, sea squirts and a variety of other marine life. Jerald spotted this soft coral which was split in the middle revealing its stem.

Soon it became really clear that it was time to split as the heavens are threatening to pour. So, until the next time, when magic of Cyrene would again reveal its secrets. We’ll be back!

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