Nature Walk Series
Bukit Timah Nature Reserve
16 December 2011

Highlight:

photo photo photoThis would be my last trip to this Reserve for the year. I had only come by this place 4 times this year compared to 7 times last year. The first 30 minutes was uneventful, with the usual plants seen along the path. Then, I came across this single flowering ginger plant. I had already seen two types of wild gingers (Scaphochlamys breviscapa and Scaphochlamys lanceolata) around this area but this one was definitely a new type of ginger plant judging from the colour of the flower. I had noticed this population of ginger since the first time I set foot in this area. Previously, I had thought that it was the young plant of the Great Spindle Ginger (Hornstedtia scyphifera). It probably did not flower often as I could only find one plant with flower among the numerous plants in that area. So far, I had no clue on its identity yet. [Update: Elettariopsis curtisii]

After leaving the ginger enclave, I came across a young plant a few metre down the track and decided to have a closer look to determine what it was. photophoto It ended up in an interesting find, my first sighting of a stick insect in the wild. I had seen these insects in captivity but not the free-roaming ones. It did not occur to me that it was an insect when I first flip over the leaves to have a peek underneath. It remained motionless all the time while I turned the leaves around, probably thinking that I had not detected it.

photoTen minutes later, I had my next new discovery, a mid-size tree bearing light pink flowers with long and slender petals. There were at least 4 such flowers on separate braches on the tree. This tree was already on my radar screen previously when I first saw a tiny flower bud back in February this year. Back then, I had no idea what it was. Though I passed by the tree in my last 2 trips, no flowers were seen. This time round, the flower had led me to the identity of this plant, Polyalthia angustissima.

photophotoA lot of these oval shaped fruits were found littering the ground at two locations. They were likely from some tall trees but I had no idea which ones they were. A Malay Viscount butterfly (Tanaecia pelea pelea) was attracted to one of the flatten fruits.

photo photoWhile walking along the main road toward the exit of the Reserve, two shrubs with similar green fruits caught my attention. At first, I thought they were from the same type of plant. Upon close examination, one of the fruit was round while that on another plant was more pointed at its tip. Of the two new plants, I had managed to identify one --- Canthium confertum. [Update: The other plant was Garcinia gaudichaudii.]

Besides the stick insect, here are the rest of the little creatures seen (from left to right): Stalk-eyed fly, Jumping spider (Bathippus species), Cricket nymph (Tremellia timah), St. Andrew's Cross Spider (Argiope versicolor) and White-barred Duskhawk dragonfly (Tholymis tillarga).

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In all, this was one of those fruitful trips.

Photo Gallery:

Below are selected photos from this trip arranged according to the sequence that they were taken. There is a text link under the photo that will direct you to more photos of the same species if they are available in my website.

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Winged seed of Dioscorea sp.
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Bracket fungus
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Hives of stingless bees

Statistics:

First shot: 8:36 am
Last shot: 12:17 pm
Total number of shots: 302

To use any of the image(s), please read the conditions carefully. To correct any error, please contact me.