Pulau Hantu - A celebration of marine life

Secret lives and secret worlds hidden in Singapore's most popular coral reef.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Fencing Flabellinas

Shot during our anniversary dive, observe as 2 sea slugs, common to our local reef, face off after mating necessarily! Truly altruistic behaviour! (Image below)

Aquarium: Stomach problems led to whale shark's death

by Bryce Mursch WISTV 28 Mar 07

(Atlanta-AP) Officials said Wednesday that the January death of a whale shark at the Georgia Aquarium was likely caused by stomach problems that led to peritonitis.

The aquarium released results of a necropsy from the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine on Ralph, a whale shark that died on January 12th.

In a statement, aquarium executive director Jeff Swanagan said the whale shark's stomach "appeared abnormal, because it was thin-walled and perforated. This likely caused peritonitis, which led to Ralph's death."

He said physical examinations of the aquarium's other male whale shark, Norton, have not revealed the same condition. Peritonitis is an inflammation of an important membrane in the abdomen.

Swanagan said Ralph began losing his appetite last year after a series of treatments was prescribed to the Ocean Voyager exhibit to suppress a parasitic leech commonly found on aquatic animals.

After several treatments, he said, the appetites of Ralph and Norton declined, and they eventually stopped eating. Alice and Trixie, the Aquarium's two female whale sharks, were not exposed to the same number of treatments and have not shown the same behavior. full article

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Gina's Hantu!

Reefexplore volunteer and Hantu Bloggers Reef guide Gina Tan says she's better at pictures than she is with words. She had better eyes than I did too at last weekend's anniversary dive, with amazing finds such as Tigertail seahorses, cuttlefish, bamboo sharks, fan-tailed rays and some gorgeous nudibranches! More eyes are always better than one, stay tuned as we upload more pix from our volunteers though the course of the month!
We loved it so much we made it our logo! It's the Tigertail seashorse I missed by inches..
An adorable-looking fan-tailed ray.. Just look at its curious eyes!
Wading in Hantu's lagoon
E. ornata
First Gina gets challenged by a protective anemonefish (with good reason! A Magnificent anemone is prime real estate!)..
Then red-coloured swimmer crab takes Gina on!
Another green-coloured swimmer crab
Mega-sized reef crab! Busy feeding in the dark of the night..
This little spider crab wraps up the nite dive and last dive for the day.. till next year!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

New polo tees!

Jimmy and Debby pose for the camera in the new Hantu Bloggers polo tee! Available in white (non-volunteers) and navy blue (volunteers). Available in all sizes at $20 for non-volunteers. Email to order!


We had a day of fantastic weather. Perhaps even, a bit too much sun! 4 dives, a night dive... sharks, seahorses, rays, octopus, turtles you name it, it was all down on the list. Divers explored new sites and got to see some amazing whip corals and gorgonians. Some even spent their dives on rescue missions, releasing trapped sharks from discarded bubus and a poor little snapper that got caught in the hook of a discarded fishing line. An extremely eventful day. What better way to mark our 3rd year anniversary!

The dives that have for the past years been so well supported by the public are truly essential in keeping this blog alive, and making the world aware of what our tiny Singaporean reef has to offer. Without the dives, we'd have no content for our web, and without our team of dedicated volunteers, we would only be running trips for pairs once every 2 months!

Thanks to readers of our web, contributors, photographers, volunteer divers and volunteer managers! Keep on blogging! Keep on diving! Keep our reefs alive!

Take a closer look at the above pictures and more! We will continue to update our web with more pix and even some videos along the course of the week, so stay tuned! There's more comin'!

Frogfish Find!

You don't have to go underwater to discover the mysterious and facinating animals of our local waters! Look what we came across when taking a walk at Labrador Park's rocky shore! I have only seen 2 frogfish in Singapore so far, so this is an extremely lucky find! Who knows what else we can potentially come across?

Friday, March 23, 2007

Putting Your Thoughts to the Care of Our Coral Reefs - The Green Fins Slogan Contest

Bangkok, 13 March 2007 – Tourists, diving and snorkeling enthusiasts in 10 Asian countries will get a chance to pen their thoughts on the preservation and conservation of coral reefs in the Green Fins Slogan Contest which begins today and runs till midnight 30 April 2007. The competition, organized by the East Asian Seas Regional Coordinating Unit ((EAS/RCU), the Secretariat of the Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA) seeks to draw attention of tourists, tour and dive operators and the public to the critical conditions of coral reefs in the region and the need for practices that do not worsen the health of an already threatened resource.

More than a third of the world’s coral reefs are found in the East Asian Seas that traverses Australia, Cambodia, the People’s Republic of China, Indonesia, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam. The region also has the highest coral reef biodiversity in the world. However, pollution, tourist activities, and destructive fishing have taken their toll on the reefs which are now in critical and threatened condition. Around 38% of coral reefs in Southeast Asia and over 14% in Northeast Asia have already been destroyed. Many of the 1.3 billion people living within a hundred kilometers of coastal areas of the East Asian Seas region are dependent on reefs resources for
their day-to-day survival.

The Green Fins Slogan Contest will culminate in an award ceremony on 30 May, 2007 that will be held in Phuket, Thailand.

The Green Fins programme was initiated by the EAS/RCU in 2004 to encourage dive and resort operators, and inadvertently clients who use their services, to adopt environmentally-friendly practices when diving or snorkeling around coral reefs. The programme began in Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines, three of the most popular diving destination countries in the region. Sixty five dive operators and 200 divers are members of this programme in Thailand. Green Fins members in Thailand have also been active in monitoring, cleanup events and awareness activities. (More)

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Spineless Wonders!

Wondering what these amazing critters are? Check out the host of spineless wonders uncovered at Semakau on The Tide Chaser Blog!

Sharks, slugs and snares

Hantu Blog volunteer Hui Bing volunteered with the Blue Water Volunteers Reef Check Survey at Raffles Lighthouse over the weekend. See Raffles Lighthouse though her very acute eyes!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Save our seahorses

By Chai Mei Ling New Straits Times 11 Mar 07

Contrary to popular belief, seahorses are poor swimmers. They use their tail to grasp at seagrasses all the time and most species have very limited home range.

The tiger tail seahorses, for example, occupy just 1m square home range throughout their lifetime, says Choo.

As such, the survival of seahorses depends gravely on seagrass beds, just like the endangered turtle and dugong, which feed on seagrass. (full article)