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  • Nature News

    NEWSLETTER OF THE NATURE SOCIETY (SINGAPORE) MAYJUN 2007

    MICA (P) 216/08/2006 www.nss.org.sg

    Printed on Cyclus Offset 100% recycled paper

    ACTIVITY CALENDAR

    Harapan Rainforest Initative Talk 4 May

    Conservation Chat 9 May

    Birdwatching at Rifle Range Forest 13 May

    Changi Coast Ramble 20 May

    Butterfly Walk at Pasir Ris Nature Park 26 May

    Nature Walk at Alexandra Hill 27 May

    Horseshoe Crab Watch 02 Jun

    Birdwatching at Pulau Ubin 03 Jun

    Fun at Sentosas Coastal Forest 05 Jun

    World Environment Day Picnic at Sentosa 06 Jun

    Butterfly Walk at Singapore Botanic Gardens 23 Jun

    Pulau Ubin Durian Ramble 24 Jun

    Butanding! Whale Shark Presentation 27 Jun

    QUICK FIND Pg

    Activities 2

    Trips 5

    Special Report 6

    Reports 8

    News 16

    Announcements 21

    Directory 23

    All Purpose Form 24

    NEW BOOKS!

    On

    page

    21

    Kids

    Kids

    Unexpected adventure in high

    grass country this issues photo-comic report, pg 15

    TRIPS:!Silk Road Through the Celestial Mountains,

    Kyrgyzstan

    In this issue:! Goodbye Khatib

    Bongsu! pg 6

    !"Presidents Chat Details, pg 8

    !"NEW! NSS Committee & Council Roundup, pg 9

    ! at Upper Seletar! pg 12

    ! Nesting Tales, pg 14

    !"Conservation News, pg 18

    !"Speaking up for Sentosas Forest, pg 21

    Kids

    Kids

    ! Singapores Splendid Shorelife

    " 2007 Checklist on the Birds of Singapore

  • Activities MayORGANISED BY NSS

    Friday 4 Harapan Rainforest Initative: New

    Hope for the Indonesian Forests A talk by Dr. Marco Lambertini, Director of Network and Programme, Birdlife International, and Sukianto Lusli, CEO of Burung Indonesia. Hear all about the exciting conservation and restoration project that has just got the go-ahead to manage Harapan Forest for 100 years.!Covering an area of 1,000!sq km of high canopy and degraded!lowland rainforest!in Sumatra, Harapan Forest is a treasure trove of bio-diversity, including large mammals such as elephants and tigers.!A discussion with!Dr. Lambertini and Mr. Lusli follows the talk, on possibilities for early NSS involvement in the project perhaps on surveys, restoration work, education work with local people, ecotrips, etc. Member or non-member, if you are interested in being involved, do come to this talk at 7.30pm at the NSS Office.

    Wednesday!9 Conservation Chat This is an informal gathering for members concerned about nature conservation in Singapore. The objectives are: 1) To keep members in touch with the Conservation Committees latest conservation efforts; 2) to obtain feedback on what the Committee is doing or plans to do; 3) to obtain information on existing or impending!problems in nature reserves and areas that are unknown to the Committee; and 4) to obtain ideas!and suggestions for conservation efforts. This session also aims to foster camaraderie for nature conservation. This sessions agenda is on the PUBs ABC Waters Programme and any other conser-vation issues you may like to raise. Call or e-mail Ho Hua Chew (hohc@starhub.net.sg) if you have any suggestions. Conservation Chat starts at 7.30pm at the NSS Office.

    Sunday 13 Birdwatching at Rifle Range

    Central Catchment Forest After waving goodbye to our winter visitors and passage migrants, this is

    the time to get re-acquainted with our forest birds again. We will explore this part of the forest with experienced birder Lim Kim Chuah. The little-visited Rifle Range Catchment Forest yields avian inhabitants

    like babblers, woodpeckers, sunbirds, spiderhunters, leafbirds, Asian Fairy Bluebirds etc. Meet at the junction of Dunearn and Rifle Range Roads at 7.30am. Car-pooling will be required.

    Sunday 20 Changi Coast Ramble with the Nature Ramblers led by Dr Ho Hua Chew. This 9km/4hr ramble will take us from Tanah Merah to Changi Village. We will follow tracks in the reclaimed land, stroll through casuarinas trees and coconut groves at Changi Beach Park, and along the sandy beach. There is good chance of spotting interesting birds along the coast and in the park. The ramble will end at Changi Village hawker centre where we can have lunch. Please bring water, rainwear and a hat or cap. Binoculars and a camera are optional. Meet at 8am, Tanah Merah Ferry Terminal bus shelter. (Take SBS Service 35 from Bedok Bus Interchange). Booking is not required but participants must be NSS members. Due to the length of this walk, it is not suitable for children under 12 years.

    Saturday 26 Urban Butterfly Walk at Pasir Ris

    Nature Park with Gan Cheong Weei (9754-4174). Butterflies at Pasir Ris include mangrove species like the rare and gigantic, yet graceful King Crow; the common Blue Glassy Tiger, its close

    NATURE NEWS MayJun 2007 ACTIVITIES

    2

    Photo: Kim Lee

    Time to get re-acquainted with our forest birds

    More on the Harapan Rainforest Initiative by BirdLife and its affliate, Burung Indonesia, at http://www.birdlife.org/action/ground/sumatra/index.html

    Discover why butterflies love Pasir Ris

    Photo: Kim Lee

  • relative, the Dark Glassy Tiger; the seldom seen Plain Banded Awl Skipper; and many others. As it is near town, urban species like the Lime Butterfly and Striped Albatross can occasionally be seen. Please bring enough water to last three hours. Insect repellent will help make this walk more comfortable. Meet at Pasir Ris MRT station at 9am.

    Sunday 27 Nature Walk at Alexandra Hill with Goh Si Guim. Alexandra Hills winding roads, lush greenery and colonial buildings make for a relaxing stroll down memory lane, a time trip into a pre-war yesteryear. Come and discover what this off-the-beaten path oasis holds in its quiet embrace. Meet at 8am at the junction of Hyderabad and Alexandra Roads.

    Activities JuneSaturday 2 Horseshoe Crab Watch with Hsu Chia Chi (93817653) and Conservation Volunteers. Spend an afternoon at the Mandai mangroves and help rescue and study horseshoe crabs trapped in discarded nets. Recommended footwear: shoes or boots. Meet at the nameless track extending from Kranji Road at junction with Kranji Loop at 2.30pm. Take bus 925 from Kranji MRT, alight at Chinese temple along Kranji Loop, cross the road and look for the beginning of the nameless track that starts beside Leong Soon Pte Ltd, 251 Kranji Road. If transport is needed, meet at Kranji MRT station taxi stand at 2.15pm.

    Sunday 3 Birdwatching at

    Pulau Ubin This is one of our last vestiges of countryside where birders and nature lovers can still freely roam. Join Wong Chung Cheong to seek out Oriental Pied Hornbills, Abbotts Babblers, Crested Goshawk and other birds that reside on this idyllic island. Meet at 7.30am at the Changi Point jetty.

    Saturday 23 Butterfly Walk at the Singapore

    Botanic Gardens with Simon Chan (9748-5465). We will be taking a leisurely stroll in the garden, which includes a small patch of primary forest. Butterflies seen here include the rare and endangered Common Birdwing and the Common Rose. Other denizens of this wonderful place are the Painted Jezebel, Striped Albatross, Common Grass Yellow, Common Mormon, Lime Butterfly and many more. Please bring enough water to last the entire walk of 3 hours. Meet at the Botanic Gardens main entrance at the junction of Cluny Road and Napier Road at 9.30am.

    Sunday 24 Pulau Ubin Durian Ramble with the Nature Ramblers led by Yap Chung Kui. We will

    explore the numerous trials and savour the rustic charm of the island, which will take in Malay kampongs, fish ponds, coconut groves and fruit orchards. If the season is right, we might get to taste some kampong

    durians. Please bring water, rainwear and a hat or cap. Binoculars and a camera are optional. Meet at 7.45am at the new Changi Point Jetty to board the

    boat to Pulau Ubin. Boat fare (return) is to be borne by participants. Booking is not required but

    participants must be NSS members. Due to the

    length of this walk, it is not suitable for children under 12 years.

    NATURE NEWS MayJun 2007 ACTIVITIES

    3

    DISCLAIMER: Whether trips are organised by NSS or by individual members of the society, neither the Nature Society (Singapore) or its leaders are in any way whatsoever responsible for any injury or damage to any person or property during a trip. For trips by individual members, please check on liability with the trip organisers.

    Explore Pulau Ubin through a birding trip or a ramble this June!

    Photo: Kim Lee

  • Wednesday 27 Butanding! The Gentle Giants of Donsol "Butanding!" our spotter screamed. "Get ready", our Filipino guide advised. At his prompt "Go, go, go!" everyone leapt into the water and

    swam towards the dark, approaching shape. Soon we were close enough to see that the giant form was a whale shark or "butanding". This plankton-eating shark, Rhincodon typus, is found in the worlds tropical seas

    The largest specimens are 15m (50ft) long, making them the biggest fish in the world. The migratory whale shark feeds largely on plankton, as well as on small fish and crustaceans. It is the only large shark with its mouth at the front of its head rather than underneath, but the creature is docile and harmless to humans. The Mar