Day 6, 17 August 2017 — Work at the Vabbinfaru Marine Lab

After so much hustle and bustle yesterday, today was a more chilled out day. I started off with the usual morning routine…collect food for the turtles, clean them down, change the tank water and then hand feeding the little ones. It’s so rewarding to see the little ones eating each day!


Hand feeding the turtles in the morning. My favourite morning routine here.

Aru, Zim and I then started training for the reef surveys. These surveys require us to be able to take down details of the fish…everything from the family (damsels, groupers, butterflyfish, etc.), to the abundance, to the length of the fish. As with most things over here, it’s way harder than it appears to be. Basically what we do is keep on estimating the sizes of different leftover bits of cable tie, and then measuring it on a ruler to see how accurate we are. Using my index finger for scale (it’s around 8cm), we tested ourselves to see who was more accurate with size estimation. *Definitely not me*

Then, even more challenging, we started scattering rice on the table to see how well we can estimate the abundance of fish. In reef surveys, some fish travel in large groups, and their abundance is particularly hard to estimate as well. The rice was a pretty smart way of making sure that we all are able to make quick and precise estimations. TLDR…I used plastic and rice to improve my fish recording skills.

Then, it’s back in the water we go! Zim and I went for a dive to clean up the rope nursery at Vabbinfaru! The marine lab is trying to help portions of the reef damaged by crown of thorns outbreaks and bleaching to recover. These are some of the photos of the rope and table nursery for reef rehabilitation.


Corals at the rope nursery


Zim and I done with cleaning the nursery!


A brittle star already living together with our coral fragment


Some juvenile fish that kept me company as I brushed algae away from the nursery.


After the day’s work, Zim brought me back to her home in Male and we made some Laksa together! Then, we met up with her friend Soy and talked about politics, jobs and the environment right at the breakwaters overlooking the sea until we lost track of time and had to rush back.

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I think she quite liked it so yayyy! Also it felt so nice to have a taste of home.


I miss Singaporean food so much nowwwww.

8 thoughts on “Day 6, 17 August 2017 — Work at the Vabbinfaru Marine Lab

Add yours

  1. Such amazing experiences Crystle and your work is so important. I’m sure your family is very proud of you. I know Auntie Barb is. We could do with you up at our Great Barrier Reef. Good luck with your studies.
    Jan O’Grady


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