29th Jan 2010 -Last trip to lab park ):

6 02 2010

Weather: cloudy/rainy

Time: 4.17-5pm

Tide: 0.3m

This trip marked our last trip to Lab Park. ): The tide was very low, and we could see a lot of seagrass! (insert pic of low tide). Due to the low tide, we finished our random sampling of 33 quadrats in a relatively short time. the seagrass generally looked healthy, except for those which were growing near the shore, which appeared to be black.

After our monitoring we went to explore labrador park. We spotted white eggs deposited on the Thalassia and many other organisms including shrimps, and a bunch of fat and squishy polychaete worms under the rocks.

We managed to explore the other side of Labrador Park which we have hardly ventured into. There, we saw patches of seagrass. However, the patch of seagrass is contained within the rocky shore and is also relatively small, possibly posing a problem to monitering. This may be one of the reasons why it may be difficult to monitor the seagrass in that area.

there was a lot of algae washed up and near the shore this time!

a shrimp we spotted! It was almost inconspicuous in the water.

blue sponges growing on the rocks

some thalassia near the shore had turned black for some reason!

we saw some bubble green seaweed (Boergesenia forbesii)

some green anemone(:

algae belonging to the Neomeris species

snails on the rocks!

low tide!

Since we have concluded our last visit we would like to thank Mr Lim for his unwavering support and guidance, the guy from NParks, who opens the gate for us without fail, and the Ms Toh who answers all our emails, our parents who pick us up, as well as everyone else who has made this monitoring project a success and a meaningful one. We hope to be able to work with seagrass again!😀

Grace, Yifeng, Zenia(:

25th July 2009, Saturday, 0800-0900

15 08 2009

Date of study: 25 July 2009
Weather: Cloudy with drizzle
Time: 0800-0910
Tidal levels: -1.0

25 July was indeed a fulfilling day for our team!The tide was really low at -1.0m so we carried out Enhalus Acorodies monitoring for the first time ever😀 When we arrived, we found that the gate to the beach was locked and we had to climb over the fence to reach the seagrasses❤ Thankfully, we crept along the fence to the ramp and walked down safely. We are glad that no one  squished any Onchiidae in their expedition down the “Onchiidae Slope” (aka the inter-tidal zone where onchiidae can be seen during low tide).

We started measuring Enhalus plots from further out at sea and moving inwards towards the shore. We measured a total of 10 plots of Enhalus in 9 areas spread out randomly around the seagrass bed.  Hua Zhen became very excited upon counting 15  gastropods in the same Enhalus plot. Li Ying went in search of the inrolled leaf margins of the Enhalus as we had previously read about it online. This was a “putting-theory-into-practice” experience and we even took photos to show you! Please look at our photo collection at the end of this post for pictures we took from our trip but before that…..After finishing our Enhalus monitoring, we went in search of our quadrats which we use to track the growth of Thalassia. We were quite worried that they might had been removed by people or washed away by the waves.  We were estatic when we found them although they were covered in slimy mud. One of our tent pegs had been washed away too! -Two dollars floats away- We definitely can’t wait for another day with low tides so we can replace that tent peg and check the growth of our Thalassia plots. In about 2 months, the Thalassia cover in our plots had already grown by 30-40%.

There were also many other organisms we saw during this trip:

Dying crab missing 2 legs

The dying crab which had 2 legs missing, presumely from a fight or attack

Red Algae

The red algae which was slimy to the touch.  Mr Lim told us it was covered in something similar to our mucus.

Inrolled leaf margins (Enhalus)

The remarkable inrolled leaf margins of the Enhalus! This makes it hard to tear the leaves.

Trash we collected

Here are the rubbish we picked up along the beach and inside the sea. It weighed 11kg in total (shocking) and we appeal to beach-goers to dispose of your rubbish properly as they will endanger the lives of sea organisms.

Photos (NovDec2008) 522

Here’s a picture of our quadrat.

Thank you for supporting our project! Stay tuned for our updates from our future trips😀

Hua Zhen, Li Ying
and Regina who was regretfully unable to join us during our visit.

25thJuly09 7.45am – 9.10am

28 07 2009


Went for our second seagrass monitoring on 25th July, Saturday. We started early in the morning at 7.45am, and had to climb over the fence since the gate to the beach was not open. The tide receded to a -0.1, so we could see a lot of things we couldn’t see very clearly last time, such as the patches of thalassia which stretched unusually far out.

lab park low tide- 7.55am low tide!

Monitoring went much faster this time, as we split the work among us, and so got the work done in a jiffy. On top of that, the grey skies forewarned the storm, so we were motivated to work faster. Fortunately, there was only a slight drizzle which we managed to work through. We finished ahead of time, giving us an opportunity to explore the rest of the beach, and observe more of its interesting flora and fauna.

Also, we collected 9kg of rubbish, even though the beach was relatively clean. We classified the rubbish according to plastics, glass, metal and others. Here are some pictures:

 1 year old coral!


a newly formed coral (which will grow around 2cm per year!) So we shouldn’t break off coral because to form a large coral it takes a very long time.


sucking anemone!


the anemone which sucks onto the finger! (it’s actually stinging us, but we have thick skin (: )


 brown algae with air sacs


brown algae with air sacs (sargassum) which help them stay upright when the tide is higher.



 no rubbish today!


the relatively clean beach


us and the rubbish 2


us and the rubbish we collected!


till next time!

Grace, Zenia and Yifeng

Team 2 Reporting….

4 07 2009

On 29th May, we headed down to Labrador Park to start our first official monitoring session on seagrasses. After a demonstration by Mr Lim on how to read off data from the quadrats, we proceeded to do it ourselves. Pinning down our quadrats wasn’t all that easy as the rocks beneath prevented the pegs from penetrating deep down. We had initially planned to thread a fishing line through each seagrass but unfortunately the needle holes on the needles we had were too small for the fishing line to pass through. Hence, we used these sharp tool with needle-like tips to poke holes just above the leaf sheath of each Thalassia leaf. After completing two quadrats, we went to help the other team with the last few of their 33 random quadrats. The beach was relatively clean so we did not pick trash on that day.

 Three days later, on the 31th May, we went back down to collect the Thalassia in our quadrats in order to monitor their growth. As the tide was a little too high, we could not really see the seagrasses as clearly as on our previous visit. Fortunately, we could locate our quadrats and proceeded to collect the seagrass.

 The trips to Labrador Park were then followed by the weighing of the biomass of the Thalassia we collected. In the lab, we measured the length, average width, weight, as well as, growth of the baked seagrasses. This time, the seagrasses were a little over baked as the temperature of the oven was set too high. Hence, we had to handle the seagrasses with extreme care as they were rather brittle.

This trip has taught us to be well prepared for any emergencies like how the fishing line couldn’t thread through the needle, as well as to prepare all equipment well beforehand so as to ensure that we can carry out seagrass monitoring and collection well. We look forward to our next exciting trip to Labrador Park on 25 July, where we may also try out monitoring Enhalus.

 Here are some photos taken:

A plot of Enhalus found surprisingly near the beach
Photos (NovDec2008) 509

Our quadrats

Photos (NovDec2008) 517

Photos (NovDec2008) 522

Until then….

Hua Zhen
Li Ying

Our first monitoring session!

30 06 2009

Finally we have officially started on field work at lab park on the 29th May! (finally got to put our booties to good use too!) We learnt how to estimate percentage coverage, algae cover, sediment and canopy height. Doing it for 33 quadrats was back-breaking work, but we can now say we are able to identify different seagrasses and algae with confidence, and faster too! The area was mostly populated with Thalassia hemprichii, but we did manage to identify Halophila ovalis, and a patch of Enhalus acoroides, which was much longer than we thought it would be. We also saw crabs, snails, shrimp burrows, blue sponges and many other interesting organisms!

Here are some pictures of the quadrats:


we tried to identify the pictures by putting our fingers in, but it didn’t work out and we noted the picture number in the end.


one of our quadrats

Hairy crab2!

A hairy crab that Mr Lim pointed out to us! We took turns holding it too.

blue sponge again

Blue sponges!

enhalus flower

The Enhalus flower!

As for our beach cleaning adventures, it was unsuccessful! Because, to our surprise, the beach was very clean. Mr Lim told us that it was because there were cleaners who did periodic cleaning at the beach. We will be going down for another session soon!

Grace, Zenia, Yifeng

First trip down

19 05 2009

We are the two new teams that will be working with seagrasses for the next 1.5 years.😀
First team: Grace Cheong, Jin Yifeng and Zenia Quek.
Second team: Goh Hua Zhen, Regina Lau and Tan Li Ying.

The main objectives of our project, working together, are to maintain Labrador Park so as to clear the marine waste washed on shore, and to map out the distribution of the different species of seagrass. Our mapping is aimed at aiding future research and recreational activities to be done at Labrador Park.
Our first team will be focusing on the distribution of seagrass Thalassia hemprichii, Enhalus acoroides and Halophila ovalis. Our second team will be monitoring the growth of seagrass, so as to find out the factors that affect growth there!

2 Fridays ago, 8 May 2009, we took our first trip down to Labrador Park. We were introduced to various marine organisms that can be seen on the rocks in the intertidal zone, such as Onchidiidae, small crabs and Polychaete. We learnt the right and safe way of opening rocks so as to prevent attacks from marine creatures which reside underneath. Our teacher-mentor, Mr Lim, taught us how to identify algae and the various species of seagrasses. We had the chance to try out our new booties! (: He also taught us about the ecological relationships between the corals and seagrasses, and showed us the calcium carbonate skeleton of a dead coral.

After being debriefed, we went down to the beach once again! We picked up 3kg(:O) of rubbish which consisted of styrofoam, plastic bottles and other non-biodegradable materials, just as a start to the maintenance of the beach. :D:D:D Unfortunately, we also saw a great extent of pollution. D:D:D:
It was a fulfilling trip to Labrador Park and we are certainly very excited about our next trip!

Here are the photos of the 2 organisms mentioned above:

The Onchidiidae

The Onchidiidae


The Polychaete worm

The Polychaete worm

 Do look out for more photos in the coming posts! (:

last trip down to labrador park

23 02 2009

On the 10th of February 2009, we concluded our last formal trip down to Labrador Park for our data collection. The weather that day was great, windy and not very hot (since it was about 5.30pm). Although we had to wait for the tide to recede yet again, we did not really mind it this time and spent our time taking photos of the beach and of our plots.

high tide!

low tide!

that’s us standing at the location of our 3 plots! The 3 plots are about 2 metres away from each other.

As we could not find 2 dates with low tides that are 4 days apart, we could not conduct another fishing line growth experiment on our Thalassia hemprichii. Instead, we could only monitor our 3 plots of seagrass, as well as collect the seawater sample again. This time, we discovered that many of the Thalassia had turned brown!

at first, we thought it was a very bad case of epiphyte, but Mr. Lim attributed this find to the extremely dry weather recently, so the Thalassia have been “sunburned”.

As we only had 3 plots to monitor, whereas the other group had 33, we were done much earlier. We spent the rest of our time searching for new organisms and:

yes! picking litter!

And much of the time was also spent on popping the air sacs of the brown seaweed (Sargassum), which was our new obsession!

when you press on the air sac, there’s a pop sound!😀

this time, instead of the usual blue anemone, we saw green anemone!

and the coin seaweed:

and the ribbon algae:

and happy us:

this is our last trip down to labrador park, and we’ll miss that wonderful place very much.
also, thank you for everyone who helped us with this project, it has been very meaningful.

Danielle, Jolyn, Xinyi