mega marine survey

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This year, SBR through its CSR initiative: The Biodiversity Portal of Singapore (biodiversity.sg) will contribute to the Singapore Mega Marine Survey. We will be on the front-line of marine dredging activities and will contribute to the sampling and exploration campaigns. 

SBR will also raise awareness on the findings.

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Above picture: TMSI research vessel that will be used for the mission

 

For more information on the Singapore Mega Marine Survey please refer to the below link:

http://megamarinesurvey.blogspot.sg/

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mega-Marine-Survey-of-Singapore/136892629681549?ref=stream

For information on the Biodiversity Portal of Singapore please visit our site at:

http://www.biodiversity.sg

First mission:

On 15th may 2013 SBR was present to contribute to the first expedition of the Singapore Mega Marine survey abord NUS research vessel the Galaxea.

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Captain Barazer inspecting one of the nets.

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One of the “rails” used to trail the net on the sea floor (it acts like skis and allows the sediment and species to go into the net)

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The Galaxea: NUS researh vessel

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First trial. The net is back on the boat with a load full of sediments and species

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Trolling in Singapore is unique while being surrounded by massive vessels!

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A sample from one of the nets (sampling at about 30 m). A usual load is composed of rocks and sediments and of course various species of animals of different sizes.

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The next step involves to a pre-sorting of the species present. Different types of species are put into different plastic containers to be studied later on. All the net content is then kept in a bag to be further sorted at the lab later on (we don’t want to miss any of the smaller animals!). The exact location of the sample is carefully monitored.

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Researchers sorting the specimens. While anyone can do it, only the trained eye is able to identify important finds.

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The back of the galaxea is equipped with a trolling bar allowing the net to be trolled back to the boat.

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While on average depths is about 30m, there are a few holes in the area, the deepest being around 200m. This time we tried to troll at 80m in a narrow passage between 2 islands.

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Modern equipment on-board the Galaxea allows the captain to know the depth and the shape of the sea bed (we want to avoid rocky sea beds that could damage the nets)

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One of the many islands surrounding Singapore. Despite one of the worlds busiest shipping line, the island still hold some coral reef colonies.

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Tires collected on the sea floor are actually full of life. Their narrow interior provides habitat for various species which have taken refuge.

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Above some of the highlight of the day out. On the left a very rare species of crab which hadn’t been spotted in Singapore (and in fact anywhere) since the 18th century!

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Sometimes unwanted items are collected in the net like this 300 kg rock! the rock was actually very difficult to bring up and has damaged the net and trolling system.

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Galaxea arriving to pick us up

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Planning the mission and where to sample for the day

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Successful catch at 70 m with a brand new net.

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Deep sea crabs, sea urchins and various species of shrimps ere abundant in this cath

Some highlights from the mission (photos by Dr Arthur Anker):

For many more exclusive pictures please visit our Biodiversity Portal: http://www.biodiversity.sg

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