Thursday, December 20, 2007

Special Feature (2): The Rape of Sungai Pulai, Johor

Leave the Seahorse at Sungai Pulai Alone!

As a Johorean, i don't even know where is Sungai Pulai until one day that, someone from Team Seagrass Singapore forwarded one email regarding to Sungai Pulai.
So i did a small search on this.
I myself won't dream of to see seahorse in Pengerang, but to my pleasant surprise, near by (kind of) around Pontian, there are seahorses!
I almost couldn't think of any places in Johor where there is a wide public known of rich marine lives.
(If you are thinking about Tioman, then, come on! Tioman belong to the state of Pahang! :P)
Please let other know about this place so that there will be at least someone to speak for the place.
All of us can play a role.

Photo from SOS gallery.

What is Seahorse?

Seahorses are a genus (Hippocampus) of fish.
Seahorses and pipefishes are notable for being the only species in which males become "pregnant".
The female inserts her ovipositor into the male’s brood pouch, where she deposits her eggs, which the male fertilizes. The fertilized eggs then embed in the pouch wall and become enveloped with tissues.
Most seahorse species' pregnancies lasts approximately two to three weeks

About Sungai Pulai Wetland

About Save Our Seahorse

The nightmare for the seahorse and Sungai Pulai has finally show up.

A proposed development plan which involve the clearing of 2255 acres (913ha) of mangroves at Sungai Pulai (near the Ramsar Site) for petrochemical and maritime industries has its EIA open for public reviewing.

The types of industries proposed are shocking. They include the manufacturing of industrial gases, synthetic resins, paints, varnishes, petro refinery, shipbulding and repair, chemical incinerator and harzadous
waste, fertilizers and pesticides, rubber remilling and latex processing

This is the intended rape of Sungai Pulai.

The EIA is open for public reviewing and comments starting 19 July 2007.
Please send in your comments by the end of the month. The EIA executive summary is attached here. Also attached is my general comments. Alternatively you can also download the EIA report from the DOE website.

Your comments can make a difference. Pls spread the words as far as you can to the like-minded people.

Please prevent the rape of Sungai Pulai.

Sincerely Yours,
Choo Chee Kuang
Save Our Seahorses

Below are the some people whom you might want to send in your comments
(email, fax, post letter, cc whatever - the more the better)

Department of Environment
Ministry of Natural Resources
Level 1-4, Podium 2 & 3,
Wisma Sumber Asli,
No 25, Persiaran Perdana
Precint 4, Federal Government Administrative Centre
62573, Putrajaya
Tel: 03-88712000 or (2200)
Fax: 03-88891973
Fax (Director General Office) : 03-88891036

Jabatan Alam Sekitar Johor Bahru
Tingkat 1&2, Bangunan Hasil,
Jalan Padi Emas 1, Bandar Baru Uda,
81200, Johor Bahru
Tel: 07-2356042
Faks: 07-2356071

Prime Minister
Prime Minister's Office
Federal Government Administration Center
Bangunan Perdana Putra
62502 Putrajaya
Tel: 603-88888000
Fax: 603-88883444

Dato' Haji Abdul Ghani Othman
Menteri Besar Negeri Johor
Pejabat Menteri Besar Negeri Johor
Aras 1, Bangunan Sultan Ibrahim, 80502 Johor Bahru, Johor.
No. Telefon : 07-2244148 / 07-2234789
No. Faksimili : 07-2230867

Seaport Worldwide Sdn Bhd (Project Proponent)
Attn: Miss Susan Chiang
Level 5, Wisma Kontena, PO Box 151,
Pasir Gudang
Tel: 607-2535888
Fax: 607-2522507

Hijau Sekitar Sdn Bhd (EIA consultants)
Ir. Dr. Wee Ka Siong
124A, Jalan Lembah,
Taman Tasek, 80200
Johor Bahru
07-2453388 /235 3322
Fax: 07-2355666

Y.B. Dato' Haji Abd. Latiff Bin Yusof D.P.M.J., P.I.S
SUKJ( Cawangan Jurutulis / Majlis Mesyuarat Kerajaan )
Aras 1, Bangunan Sultan Ibrahim, 80503 Johor Bahru, Johor.
No. Telefon : 07-2239780 / 07-2769780 / 07-2241957
No. Faksimili : 07-2246359

Unit Sains Teknologi dan ICT Negeri Johor
Aras 2, Bangunan Sultan Ibrahim, Jalan Bukit Timbalan, 80000 Johor Bahru,
No. Telefon : 07-2238239 / 07-2215030
No. Faksimili : 07-2234269

UPEN (Unit Perancang Ekonomi Negeri)
Aras 2, Bangunan Sultan Ibrahim, Jalan Bukit Timbalan, 80000 Johor Bahru,
No. Telefon : 07-2241768 / 07-2241698
No. Faksimili : 07-2241323

Tuan Haji Abd.Rahman bin Mohamed Dewam
Jurutulis Dewan Negeri Johor /
Majlis Mesyuarat Kerajaan Negeri Johor.
07 - 2239780 / 2244203 ext. 108
Email : -

Y.B. Encik Freddie Long Hoo Hin
Aras 1, Bangunan Sultan Ibrahim, 80503 Johor Bahru, Johor.
No. Telefon : 07-2239780 / 07-2769780 / 07-2241957
No. Faksimili : 07-2246359

Y.B. Datuk Halimah binti Mohamed Sadique
Aras 1, Bangunan Sultan Ibrahim, 80503 Johor Bahru, Johor.
No. Telefon : 07-2239780 / 07-2769780 / 07-2241957
No. Faksimili : 07-2246359

Photo from Chay Hoon, but this is from Chek Jawa Singapore. :)

Choo's Comments on EIA Executive Summary

The EIA Executive Summary has 20 pages. If you are interested to read, please email me and i will send it to you.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Tanjung Pengelih Shore (1): 4Nov07

It was a pleasant surprised to see so many soldier crabs near to the jetty. Roy ( :P )said, there are 'tonnes' of soldier crabs at Cyrene Reef, Singapore. But Cyrene is patch reef and not as accessible. i have never seen the soldier crabs army before, so i think this is my birthday gift from the shore. :)

When the tide goes out, hoards of Soldier Crab emerge from their sandy burrows to ‘march’ across the sandy shore. Their ‘armies’ can range from a dozen individuals to hundreds, moving over the sand flats like an undulating carpet. (This is why they are called soldier crabs. They troop about in large numbers.)

Soldier Crabs are fascinating creatures to watch, as they swarm over the flats. Systematically, they pick up parcels of sand that are placed into their large and complex mouth-parts. The sand parcel is revolved around the mouth-parts where small pieces of organic matter are extracted and consumed, the sand-pellet is then dropped and the crab picks up another parcel of sand and the process is repeated. It is interesting to note that these crabs move forward on their stilt-like legs, not sideways like most crabs.

When disturbed, the crabs burrow sideways directly into the sand, a process that takes less than two seconds. Its bizarre to sit on a sand flat and watch a hundred crabs just disappear into the sand, then a couple of minutes later, they just pop up out of the sand and carry on feeding, a great anti-predator defence.

This is not a good picture...
Anyway, i think you can see a shrimp!
It hides under the rock and normally if you flip over a rock during low tide, you will see many life forms.
(Remember to flip back the rock gentlely after that.)

Shrimp are distinguished from the superficially similar prawns by the structure of the gills. There is, however, much confusion between the two, especially among non-specialists (like me :), and many shrimp are called "prawns" and many prawns are called "shrimp".
For most people, the difference between shrimp and prawns is based on size, with larger shrimp being called prawns.

A young Avicennia mangrove.
This fellow just simply grows too near to its mother tree and this could be a disadvantage to grow under the shade of the mother tree.
The pencil roots can be see clearly.
Since mangrove nud is poor in oxygen, the pencil roots help the tree to absob oxygen from the air.

i am not sure what kind of palm tree is this.
It grows by the coastal hill by the main road of jetty.

Unknown butterfly.
Take note with the shinning blue patch near to the edge of its wing.

An ant nest!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Sungai Rengit Mangrove and Festival: 7Oct07

Home sweet home! i have finally returned from my months of overseas trip. One of the good things about to travel is, i learn to appreciate what surrounding me and what i have. This is of course something that everyone said when they travel, but i can really feel this from the bottom my my heart now. If you have forgotten the last time you just look up to the sky and enjoy the sunset, then please do so. The purplish, orangish and reddish colors in the sky are just amazingly beautiful. You don't have to even go to the seaside to do so. Just look up eventhough you are in the bus or car!
Do enjoy the pictures below. These are some findings in my warmth hometown.

Near to the river mouth, this area used to be a rich mangrove. But nowadays, it left only a few mangrove trees and hardly even see the mud lobster mound.
We still got a fat monitor lizard though!

Monitor lizard eats insects, crabs, dead animals and anything it can catch. It 'smells' the air with its blue forked tongue to track down carrion and small animals.

Climber crab. It feeds on mangrove leaves and scavenge for meat.

Archerfish. It feed on insects near to the water surface. The interesting thing is, archerfishes have elongate mouths to forcefully pumped out water to knock down the insects near to the water surface. But they have to practise and learn to be accurate over time.

Needle fish. Normally found near to the water surface as it eats small surface-dwelling fishes. It has a pair o long jaws with sharp teeth.

Calyx of bakau, a kind of mangrove tree.

Monkeys are common along the river near to the mangrove. You can easily sighted one at Tanjung Pengelih Jetty.

Oysters and alive! Oysters are molluscs with two-part shell. They stick one of their shells firmly to the rock with a strong glue.

It was the 'birthday' of the guarding deity of my clan, "Sim" (沈). The Teochew chinese opera was one of the yearly events to celebrate the birthday of the deity. i was surprised to see the Chinese electronics sub-title by the stage. i almost feel like i am in Singapore Esplanade Theatre! :) Nowadays many young people are not able to speak or understand Chinese dialect, not even to mention be able to appreciate the opera. This sub-title was really useful for the young people to understand the performance.

Offerings to the deity.

Fire cracker!

Monday, April 09, 2007

Shore Behind of Yok Poon Primary School (3)

Finally, i bought a new camera to replace my lost one. And i was lucky enough that, it was low tide when i got back home. So, i dragged my friend to go to the shore with me. :) There were nothing much at the shore though. The tide was not low enough, so we did not see the black sea cucumber. However, we saw a tiny elbow crab and i think my friend now knows that, why we should always visit the shore with a guide! :p

i will be away for another few months, likely until September. So, it is not likely that i will have anything to upload here until then. However, i think i should still be able to do the Q&A or comment stuff. :)

Like usual, we were greeted by the Friddle Crabs near to the Sonneratia mangrove tree. Male Friddle Crab has one big pincer and one small pincer. The big pincer is so huge and heavy that it is bascially no practical function. It is used to attract female, to show that i am mascular! (In the animals world, manhood is equally important. :)

There used to be abandance of oyster around the shore area, but due to over collection, there isn't as many now. Oyster is two-parted shell softbody animals. One of their shell stick firmly on the rock. When the tide comes in, the other half of the shell will open and it started to filter feed. It filters organic particle in the sea water. So if the water is polluted, either by heavy metal such as mercury or human waste, then these toxic is very likely to remain in the body of oyster. When you eat the oyster, these things will transfer to your body!

The things which look like a hat and stick on the rock is a kind of snail called limpet. It can shape its shell to suit to the uneven surface of the rock. This snail can lift up thier shell to move. So it is not stationary.

This volcano looked creature is called barnacle. It is the close relative of crab, so it is a crustacean. Barnacle is a pest in shipping industry as it will stick at the bottom of the vessle and hence causing the additional used of the fuel to drive the now heavier ship.

This is a tube of a tube worm. The tube worm is living in the tube under the ground and the tube is made from both mucus and sand. This species of tube worm like to attach a piece of leaf to its tube. It is believed that, the leaf will help the worm to better sense the vibration and hence, predator. Some fishermen would pull out the tube or dig the worm out as fishing bait.

i flipped over a rock and saw this tiny little crab, around 1cm. It looked like just another ordinary crab to me but when i took a closer look now, it looks like an albow crab to me. Its pincers are obviously longer than other ordinary crab.

Ok, this animals become my favorite in my hometown shore. There are always there and they look beautiful! This is colonial anemone. Anemone is called "sea sunflower" in Chinese. You can see the one opened and the one closed in this picture. The open one does look like a sunflower right? The have stinging cell, so they are cnidirian like jelly fish.

We saw these two stranded jelly fish on the way back. They were likely dead or going to die...
Some jelly fish will swim up-side-down to have their tantacle facing up. This is because there are sometimes symbiotic algae staying at the tantacle. These algae will produce their food from the sun and eventually the jelly fish gets its share too.

This is a simple and basic crane used by the fishermen to upload their catch from their boat to the jetty.

The black color dots that you see were all flies! There were tonnes of them flying and stopping on the fishes left on the ground. When i asked the fisherman were these to sell at the market (i asked in my horror, although i myself don't eat) ? To my relief, he said, no, these were to sell for making pet food.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Sungai Rengit Simple Town Map

A simple map as i can recall.
May be i will come out with a 'better' map later. :)
Anyway, hope this helps.