Mock Soil Test

23 08 2007

In order to prepare us to do the soil test on the soil at Labrador park, we practised on some soil samples from school, during one of our lab sessions. Mr Lim had previously purchased Rapitest Soil Test Kit, and we studied the instructions carefully. The kit allowed us to test three different nutrients found in soil as well as the acidity of the soil.

Rapitest Soil Test Kit

To test for the pH level of the soil, we had to add a sample of soil into the test compartment, add water and shake vigorously before allowing to settle. A pill of powder which matched the colour of the test compartment was also added to the mixture. Once the soil settled and the mixture turned clear, we could compare it to a colour chart and find out the acidity. The soil found at a certain part of our school turned out to be slightly acidic.

pH results

 To test for the rest of the nutrients, we had to mix soil with water and shake vigorously, before dripping the mixture to the other three test compartments. Powder found in pills whose colour matched the test compartments were also added, and we waited for the mixture to settle as well. We left the test compartments for two days to settle, and our school soil turns out to be depleted in levels of Potassium, Nitrogen and Phosphorus.

All four results

Now that we have figured out how to use this test kit, we will not have much trouble when we test the soil from Labrador beach(: We will be carrying out these tests, as well as water turbidity test, soon! We will also be continuing our profiling of Labrador Beach soon, when we can find a suitable tide, because as we’ve learnt from Sunday’s trip, 0.8m is too high!


profiling of labrador beach!

20 08 2007

So we woke up bright and early on a sunday morning to measure the gradient of labrador beach. I arrived at 745, followed by Mr Lim and Ms Ria, and started our job at 8am. The tide was very, very high… Clearly, Mr Lim didn’t expect it to be so high even though the tide table said 0.8m… And as a result of Mr Lim’s misjudgement, we all got soaked, right up to our waist.

We started measuring the gradient from the 3rd lamp post along the bridge. There was no particular reason why we started from there, apart from the fact that any further out, we’d be swimming. Our equipment comprised 2 1-metre rulers, a transect tape and a hand-made clinometre. (photos WILL be up when we get it from Mr Lim) The diagram below shows how the gradient is measured.

Set up of measurement of gradient

Shortly after we started, we were joined by Ms Siti, who has a good time laughing at Mr Lim and I with Ms Ria (They and the rest of the public). Were we that funny-looking? Well perhaps we were, two people standing in the sea at waist level (mine, not Mr Lim’s, he’s too tall), holding rulers and tape… Anyway, after we measured for 7 metres, our two missing members finally arrived, their reason being that their parents went to “sao mu” or sweep the grave. And for being late, Mr Lim made Si hui and Si ling stand at waist level so they’d get wet too. Si ling helped to take down the readings and Si hui took photos while Mr Lim and I carried on measuring. Halfway through, I accidentally dropped the clinometer in the water, and being hand-mad, it was not water proof and so got thoroughly soaked. The straw for looking through also came off. But we persevered with it, and continued for about 8 more metres. There was still some distance to the shore, but we had to stop as Mr Lim declared that the clinometer was unusable. We also measured the distance from the bridge to our “transect tape”. We didn’t actually lay out the tape as the tide was high, but managed to stay in one line by constantly checking against a reference point.

Thereafter, we completed our session with a mandatory photo taking as we really needed photos to liven up our blog. Following which, we proceeded to wash up and change, and took a lift from nice Ms Ria to the foodstalls near the road side for breakfast! Mr Lim kindly treated us to prata and ribena(: So, we really are looking forward to our next session:D

Effects of Shore Height and Visitor Pressure on Labrador Park

17 08 2007

This is a paper published by the The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology, Raffles Museum of Biodiversity. The marine lab in NUS did a study of the effects of the impact of visitors on the 4 taxa in the intertidal region of Labrador Park.


New slideshow

16 08 2007

HEY! We’ve just created a slideshow of pictures. We wanted to add them to the banner but there was some problem, so here it is!