Friday, April 30, 2010

From Dairy Farm Park to Bukit Timah Hill

Perhaps due to torrential rain on quite a number of days in the past two weeks, I noticed many fungi along the forest trails in our nature reserves. All fungi do not have chlorophyll which is found in green plants and therefore cannot produce their food through photosynthesis.

This small orange wild and perhaps poisonous mushroom grew on the shady ground at the peak of the Bukit Timah Hill.
Under the flash light, the dark bluish colour of this fungus was simply magnificent.
Fungi are capable of synthesising many organic compounds and they live either as parasites on other living organisms or as saprophytes drawing nutrients from dead remains. For example, this white fungus was found on a piece of dead fallen branch.
If we are not careful, we may think that this is the common Neurothemis fluctant dragonfly. Besides the slight difference in the red-winged pattern, the size of this rather large male Camacinia gigantea dragonfly differentiates clearly between the two. There were quite a few of them darting in high speed at the summit. Just next to the large dragonfly that I shot, this orange skipper which looks like a Telicota species quietly enjoyed a moment of solitude under a big tree. This tailless Arhopala species (possibly Arhopala major major) appeared along the sunlit trail leading to the carpark when I came down from the peak - a rather unusual behaviour as species in this genus usually prefers shady environment.
This "dragon-head' larva was found on a young leaf of a Saga Tree (Adenanthera pavonina) near one of the entrances to the Wallace Trail.
These two small and brilliantly coloured cute leaf beetles were found on the same Saga tree.
My first sighting of this yellow-and-black leaf beetle. The multi-segmented antennae look rather interesting and unique. Quite a few Lycaenids fluttering and puddling on the ground. However, they were rather skittish, hardly stopping long enough for me to take a shot. This looks like a Pointed Line Blue (Ionolyci helicon merguiana) as its forewing termen is rather straight with a rather pointed apex.
When it was in flight, the metallic blue upperside of this skittish Nacaduba species (may be Nacaduba calauria malayica) was rather prominent. It kept fluttering erratically along the Wallace Trail without stopping. It finally settled on my hand and I managed to take a shot.
The pictures here were shot in two different outings to this convenient hunting ground for me. I plan to go up to the Bukit Timah Hill a few more times as this is part of my preparation for climbing Hunagshang in China in June.

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