Tentative identifications:

  1. Barramundi (Lates calcarifer)
  2. Goatee Croaker (Dendrophysa russelli)
  3. Bearded Worm Goby (Taenioides cirratus)
  4. Barramundi
  5. Green Chromide (Etroplus suratensis), Toadfish (F. Batrachoididae, Wrasse (F. Labridae)
  6. Decorated Ponyfish (Nuchequula gerreoides)
  7. Green Chromide, Toadfish, Striped Eeltail Catfish (Plotosus lineatus)

Reporting from Seletar Dam facing Johor side. Unusually strong pungent smell from the sea got my curiosity as I was riding past this stretch.

Along the shores was a zone of 2 metres with dead horseshoe crabs (F. Limulidae), Mangrove Whipray (Himantura walga), Flower Crab (Portunus pelagicus), Grouper (Epinephelus sp.), Sand Whiting (Sillago sp.), Green Chromide (Etroplus suratensis), Spotted Scat (Scatophagus argus), Barramundi (Lates calcarifer), Toadfish (F. Batrachoididae), shrimps and huge colonies of marine bristleworms (Polychaeta).

Source: Benjamin Li Facebook

(This is Part 3 of a 3-part photo set)

Three species of mudskippers found in Singapore.

The eleven or so species of mudskippers found in Singapore are commonly seen in mangroves and mudflats, as well as in various other coastal habitats. Some smaller species have colonised rocky seawalls and breakwaters along our beaches and coastal lagoons, while others are found in the lower reaches of concrete drains and canals.

These highly specialised fishes flourish in environments where few other conventional fishes can, thanks to various adaptations that enable them to breathe out of water. Many species have special pouches in their gill chambers, enabling them to trap oxygenated water and air bubbles. In this manner, the gills are still able to function while the mudskipper is out of the water. So just like how a scuba diver brings an air tank down into the water, these are fishes that bring water tanks up onto land!

Some mudskippers are also able to gulp air and directly absorb atmospheric oxygen through the lining of the back of the mouth and throat, or even through moist skin.

Not all mudskippers are the same; some are more aquatic and prefer shallow mangrove creeks and pools or mudflats, leaving the water only to escape adverse environmental conditions and search for new bodies of water. Others are more amphibious, preferring the water’s edge and spending most of their time on land. Mudskipper species also differ in their diets, with some feeding mostly on algae, and others being predators of invertebrates such as worms and crustaceans.

Yellow-spotted Mudskipper (Periophthalmus walailakae) (Upper Left): This medium-sized species (up to 12 cm) found in mangrove forests is a carnivore, lunging at small crustaceans and insects.

Blue-spotted Mudskipper (Boleophthalmus boddarti) (Lower Left): This medium-sized (up to 13 cm) species can be abundant along river banks and creeks, and on mudflats on the fringes of mangrove forests. A herbivore, it feeds by wiping its face along the surface of the mud, scraping up benthic algae growing on the mud.

Giant Mudskipper (Periophthalmodon schlosseri) (Right): The largest of the mudskippers (up to 30 cm), this species inhabits mudflats, clearings in mangrove forests and edges, as well as the banks of tidal creeks and other open areas. It is often seen in or near the circular pool that it builds at the entrance of its burrow, which has a low rim of mud to trap some water even at low tide. Its size enables this predator to feed on small crabs and even other mudskippers.

These were some of the many specimens featured at the recently concluded Festival of Biodiversity 2014, which was held at VivoCity last weekend.

Philippines: Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) forms body to probe fishkill

By Nitz Arancon and Lito Rulona, 2014;

The Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) has created a water quality management group in response to the fiskkill at the Agusan River here last weekend.

A local envionrment official described it as one of the biggest fishkills in the city so far in recent years.

The group is headed by EMB with local government officials, including those in Manolo Fortich and Libona towns in Bukidnon and Misamis Oriental, serve as members.

The group was formed in order to look into suspicions that plantations, poultry farms and piggeries in Bukidnon, particularly the ones in Libona and Manolo Fortich, factored in the fishkill at the Agusan River on Saturday and Sunday.

City local Environment and Natural Resources officer Edwin Dael confirmed that it has been suspected that toxic wastes from the Bukidnon towns resulted in the fishkill.

Bisan ang mga isda sa suba sa Balubal, patay man gihapon,” said Dael. “Ma-o na kini ang labing dako nga fishkill so far sa Cagayan de Oro kay ti-aw moy duha ka adlaw.”

The dead fishes were mostly anga (Red-tailed Goby) (Sicyopterus lagocephalus), banak (mullet) (F. Mugilidae), tangkig (eel) (Anguillidae or Synbranchidae) and pigok (Tapiroid Grunter) (Mesopristes cancellatus) that are endemic in Cagayan de Oro and Misamis Oriental.

The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) took water samples from the Agusan River for examination.

Mayor Oscar Moreno has called on the EMB and BFAR to speed up the investigation to determine what really caused the fishkill.

Dael said fishkills have been taking place in the city in recent years but the result of any investigation has not been made public.

He said Moreno directed him to closely coordinate with the EMB and make sure that the Bureau would act on the matter.

“We asked the EMB director to call for a meeting this week and conduct and investigation. Mayor Moreno said he wants someone to answer for the fishkill and that the EMB should file cases in the event that those responsible are operating outside the city,” said Dael.

Source: Mindanao Gold Star Daily

Philippines: Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) forms body to probe fishkill