Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Once Upon a Tree: Tides and Coastlines episode 05 - Lost Connections

After a 2 week hiatus, the divejunkie review is back!! And this time round I even managed to catch the very very start of the show *beams* Even included a quickie history class by Sue-Lyn that started off with her in front of a Google map that had an arrow pointing to Raffles' landing spot.

In first section, we head down to Labrador Park and hear Prof Leo Tan, "marine guru" talk about the need to actively build this rapport and affinity for the sea.
12labradorpark-21jun2004 03labradorpark-21jun2004 15labradorpark-21jun2004 32labradorpark-21jun2004
This affinity needs to start from young, so that the appreciation of nature can be ingrained, along with some national pride. Since it is "part and parcel of our home". And once we can appreciate it, "commitment will come when there is love". I think he spoke the heartfelt thoughts of all intertidal volunteers guides who guide the public at Kusu, Semakau, Chek Jawa, Sungei Buloh, Labrador Park..... How can we NOT agree with him? He really puts forth an eloquent, passionate stand about how we shouldn't loose our connection with the sea. Speaking of which, I need to admit that those photos of Labrador Park rocky shore was taken nearly 4 years ago when I first started my love affair with the shores when otterman got woceht and me to start of the Labrador Park blog. Things cropped up and I have long since retired from the blog but here's their first guided walk held earlier in the month, kindly posted by Justin.
The long-gone-days when 3 utterly blur undergrads were sent out to document the flora and fauna of Labrador's rocky shore

Then came the advert before we joined Sue-Lyn and Siti at the seagrass lagoon located next to our very own offshore Landfill!!
IMG_0046 crossing the seagrass meadow
Quotable quote to take home from this section "Wait, what's a photic zone?" "Excuse me, nerd talk..." Just SOOooo candid! And yes, when you talk to volunteers who also do research, there is a tendency to go into "nerd talk". ^^ Using the example of tape seagrass and needle seagrass, Siti explains about seagrass strategies on maximising limited space, and talks a little about the complexity of seagrass beds, enabling them to be areas of shelter and nursery for our little marine critters. And then a quick demo on the kind of monitoring that TeamSeagrass does. Type of substrate the quadrat falls on, percentage seagrass cover etc....
Am glad that the film crew managed to get shots of the seagrass submerged in water. They do look way more impressive! =^-^= Please correct me if I am wrong but was the thing that was labeled as a "marine worm" actually a synaptid sea cucumber? Only caught a glimpse as I glanced up from my mad scribblings.... (KS, do help me check when u watch the recording you took~~ Thanks!) After a quick discussion with the few other who caught the episode, that was a rather glaring mis-identification of a synaptid sea cucumber.... May some how have been confused with the collar worm aka Eunice sp. marine worm... Since the online photo of the worm looks a tad bit like the synaptid....
uber long synaptid sea cucumber (3)
Yes, this is our synaptid friend of a cucumber that is common spotted in the seagrass lagoon at the Semakau intertidal.

Then it was back to Shawn and Labrador Park. This time focusing on coastal forest... Their uniqueness - ability to thrive despite being subjected to the drying effects of a constant breeze, the salt spray, and the thin soil cover.
How we should really treasure and appreciate this habitat as we have little of it left, and some of the plants being really rare (didn't manage to catch the names that slided off Shawn's tongue...).

What I like best about this episode is actually the take home message in the "Reducing Ecological Footprint" section. It was done in the style of some rather old Mastercard (?) advertisement, placing a price on material things, and the price of memories being priceless.... Like getting a new handphone with an effective lifespan of 8 months would cost you $300-odd while an intertidal walk with BWV would cost $15 that would give you memories to last ages; cost of a game center and gaming compared to being a NHC volunteer.... Gosh! I really miss that series of ads! Drives home the message of how connections and memories and stuff that REALLY matters cannot have a price tagged onto it!

Words from the producer on the episode on the wildfilms blog.

So then, the last and final episode would air next week, featuring an intertidal walk with Debby of the HantuBlog and some diving action at our very own coral nursery!! Here's Debby's entry about the filming.


CH said...

Ya...the Synaptid Sea Cucumber was labeled wrongly as a marine worm.

juanicths said...

wah~~ u blog stalker!!! thot Ria wld b the first to comment. Got a shock when I saw it labelled as marine worm, so I wanted to make sure...

budak said...

Leo Tan's segment was rather more hopeful (and positive) than peter ng's last week. but the seagrass bit (they never mention Semakau at all for some reason) I found was a bit too focused on the transecting (*hides from Siti) part. Would have preferred more about their ecological/marine productivity role.

juanicths said...

well, peter ng tends to be my gloom-n-doom most of the time... conservation classes were kinda depressing for us...