Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Long Hike To Chek Jawa @ Pulau Ubin

Taking a long and leisure hike to Chek Jawa in Pulau Ubin on a nice Sunday morning (21 Nov) was something I look forward to - so I grabbed the opportunity of being a guide for a friend of mine who has not visited this most natural environment in Singapore for more than two decades.

This mangrove shrub which was standing straight and tall in a pond along the Sensory Trail is likely to be Lumnitzera littorea (Family : Combretaceae ). Its exceptionally striking and attractive red flowers attracted both photographers as well as birds (I missed a beautiful sunbird perching on this plant)
This is another shot of a whole bunch of flower buds - so I guess in a week's time the whole tree will blossom with red flowers. In order to be back at Changi Village before 1:30, I could not adopt my usual outing habit of waiting and spending time in stalking butterflies along our way.

You will not miss this most common spider on Ubin - the Golden Orb Web Spider (Nephila maculata). This is a female which is much bigger than the male.
I encountered many Knights (Lebadea martha) along Jalan Ubin as well as Jalan Durian. I believe both sub-species parkeri and malayana were present on Ubin. This one looks more like a malayana from a glimpse of its rather brownish-orange patch near the edge of its upperside hindwing. All the Knights that I encountered were very skittish and they didn't stay long enough for me to get a closer shot. This is a long-distance shot of a more pristine Lebadea martha parkeri.
This showy and attractive flower is Gloriosa superba (Family : Liliceae). The outward-spreading yellow stamens are rather unique and prominent.
We finally reached Chek Jawa around 11:30 am. Strolling along the boardwalk, my friend noticed this very well-camouflaged mud crab coming out from its burrow.
I guess this is a mangrove cricket which was found at Punai Hut.
From far, I noticed a fast-flying Graphium species visiting a row of plants opposite the Information Centre. This is a record shot of a Common Bluebottle ovipositing on some young leaves of its host plant.
A small greenish-yellow Flatid planthopper was found moving on a climber's stem - quite a challenge to take a good shot of this guy as it probably had too much energy to stay still.
We decided to take another route going back to the jetty. The trail which is overlooking the Balai Quarry really offers us a magnificent view of this abandoned quarry as well as the lush greenery of the mangrove forest.

A grasshopper was staying very still on the Singapore Rhododendron (Melastoma malabathricum) leaf along the trail.
On the same plant, I also found this Malay Baron (Euthalia monina monina) which was "intoxicated" by the dry fruits of the Singapore Rhododendron. Feeding and flapping its wings above my eye level, the upperside of this Malay Baron was out of my sight - so only the delicate underside wing patterns could be seen.
I believe there may be many interesting and less common fauna and flora species on Ubin that I have not seen. So, my next trip to Ubin will be a long hike again, perhaps going to the western part of the island.


  1. What gorgeous photos of the amazing plants and animals on Ubin! Thanks for sharing them!

  2. Ria, thanks for your kind comments.
    Yes, some of the mangrove plants and creatures are really beautiful and fascinating - hope to take more pictures in the future.