Friday, 6 January 2017

December RUMbles: kayak surveys, cleanup, walks and more!

The Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative volunteers had a very busy year end.
Record turnout for the R.U.M. walk!
Photo by Tammy Wong.
With a kayak survey of mangrove Mother Trees, a mangrove clean up, a sold-out tour, and sharing about Ubin with the Straits Times too!

Mangrove Mother Tree survey by kayak!

Since we would like Mother Nature to do the planting, one aspect of R.U.M. is to find out more about the 'mother trees' that have already settled around the abandoned aquaculture ponds. For the RUM site near Sungei Puaka, it is impossible to survey the trees by foot. The only way to do it is by kayak!
On 10 Dec, thanks to Phillip Lim and Lisa Lim, a group of RUM volunteers (made up of diverse background - biologists, arborist, geographers, students, teachers, landscape architect and IT professional), all with a common interest and love for our precious coastal wetlands came together and carried out a biodiversity survey and mangrove plants ID around the abandoned aquaculture ponds next to Sg Puaka.
The volunteers made two kayak surveys!
Photo by Ng Siak Juay.

MORE photos of the kayak survey, thanks to Lisa Lim.

More about the second kayak survey of mangrove mother trees, thanks to Ng Siak Juay.

Their sightings have been added to the plot of the 'mother' trees surveyed earlier on foot.

Mangrove Cleanup!

Thanks to Lisa Lim, together with a group of students from Singapore Polytechnic and few regular RUM volunteers from the Nature Society (, we cleared more than 50kg of driftnet and marine debris along the coastal area of one of the RUM site in less than 2 hours.
Photo by Lisa Lim.
Here's more photos of the clean up thanks to Lisa Lim.

Merry Mangrove Mapping at Ubin with R.U.M.

The volunteers had the biggest turnout for our free monthly walk! With 8 hardcore RUM volunteers and nearly 50 hardcore visitors. The walk began as usual, thanks to Uncle Lim, at his shop at Ubin Town. Phillip Lim as usual, an anchor guide at the walk, here he is giving a briefing before we begin our walk.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative monthly walk, Dec 2016
Uncle Lim also let us put up the R.U.M. banners at the front of his shop.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative monthly walk, Dec 2016
We're fortunate to have John Chen at the walk. John is interning with NParks (and also Pesta Ubin!) and shared more about the abandoned aquaculture ponds that NParks has transformed into a beautiful freshwater haven for wild birds.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative monthly walk, Dec 2016
Thanks also to Sankar for guiding. He spots a Flying dragon - a lizard that can glide.
Photo by Mohammad Juhari.
Not everyone can spot the tiny animal high up on the coconut tree. So thankfully Dayna Cheah was there to take a photo of it and share it with the participants.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative monthly walk, Dec 2016
For the first time in December, the R.U.M. walk allowed participants a chance to try out mangrove mapping. And learn more about the science behind mangrove restoration. Jared Moore did an awesome job explaining how mapping works.
Photo by Mohammad Juhari'
Despite the short downpour, everyone had a chance to try out mapping.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative monthly walk, Dec 2016
The large group broke up into two, taking turns to try out mapping or exploring the shore nearby. Thanks to Mona Tan, Sankar and other nature guides for helping to find critters and sharing about them.
Photo by Mohammad Juhari.
I'm so impressed by the hard core participants, undaunted by wet weather! Bravo!
Photo by Mohammad Juhari.
Indeed, we feel like champions at the end of the walk! Thanks to Mohammad Juhari for the video of Lisa Lim and Mona Tan and Liz Lim having fun!

Photos of the walk thanks to Mohammad Juhari

MORE photos of the walk by Mohammad Juhari

Photos of the walk thanks to Tammy Wong!

Ubin with the Straits Times

The R.U.M. team were touched when Audrey Tan from the Straits Times approached us to do a story about Ubin's mangroves. Another great excuse to visit Ubin, share about the glorious mangroves, and some of the work being done to restore mangroves in abandoned aquaculture ponds. Phillip Lim shared about the importance of mangroves for fish farming, and he found tiny fishes in the mangroves to illustrate how mangroves are an important fish nursery.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative interviewed by the Straits Times
Lisa Lim shared about the work being done to clean up the mangroves of trash so baby mangrove trees can grow in a cleaner environment. While Jared Moore shared about how mangrove mapping works and about the many different species found in our mangroves.
Restore Ubin Mangroves (R.U.M.) Initiative interviewed by the Straits Times
And Ria was asked to share about the Sea holly! Thanks to Audrey Tan, Desmond Foo, Huda Aziz for the awesome video and story, and Ariffin Jamar for awesome photos.

The RUMblers had a busy and exciting December. Alas, in the new year, there was an oil spill off Pulau Ubin and it has started to affect the mangroves on Ubin. The RUMblers are working hard to document the impacts and see how we can work together to help the mangroves.

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