Monday, May 19, 2008

No Winners for May 08 Cyrene Contest

Dear Cyrene Fans,

The deadlines for the "Let's go to Cyrene Reef" Blogging Contest is now closed. Unfortunately, not a single one of you mad-about-cyrene folks submitted an entry. There are only limited trips each month and only on certain months of the year. If you miss your chance now, you may not get another chance!

Many of you have written asking if you really must write something. Well, it's hard for us to decide who to give the seats to if we do not have something to gauge by. If you cannot afford the cost of the boat ride then perhaps you should just mention this to us. No time to write something or don't have a blog? Well there is always Facebook Notes or even just take a video of yourself on a webcam and tell us in person why you want to go to Cyrene. The possibilities and endless.

Perhaps the amount of time was too short or the dates not suitable for you? Well, not to worry. There is yet another chance in June.

Date: 23 Jun (Mon)
Time: 0700-1000

Now you have one month to prepare for your submission. The earlier you do it the better chance you have! In fact, if you're the only submission to the contest, the chances of you winning is even higher.

So what are you waiting for? Apply for leave, write your post, and email it to !

For contest details, read the rules here.

Read full article here

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

“Let’s go to Cyrene Reef” blogging contest

"Want to go to Cyrene Reef? Now is your chance!

In conjunction with the "I want to go Cyrene Reef" Facebook Group, the Naked Hermit Crabs ( will be organizing several working trips to Cyrene Reef in the coming months and 2 lucky persons will get a chance to join us on these trips.

All you need to do is to write a blog post on why you want to go to Cyrene Reef and the 2 best essays each month will be given the opportunity to join the trips to Cyrene.

Be warned that going to Cyrene Reef is no easy feat. There is no jetty and amphibious landing is required. That means that you will actually get your feet (and legs!) wet. The walk is long and may be strenuous to some. The boat to Cyrene cost $800 per trip and can only take up to 14 persons each time. Space is precious and highly coveted. The subsidized cost for each passenger is $46/pax. If you think you deserve to visit Cyrene free of charge, convince us! Let us know how you would like to contribute to Cyrene and we might just sponsor your trip for free.

But first of all, convince us that you deserve one of the coveted spots on the boat to Cyrene. This is what you need to do:

1) WRITE (or any other forms of creative expression) about Cyrene Reef and/or why you want to go to Cyrene Reef. If you wish to have your trip fully subsidized, remember to convince us in your submission.
2) PUBLISH your masterpiece on any means of publication online
3) SUBMIT your entry to us at
4) Remember to include in your email:
a. Name
b. Email
c. Contact Number
d. Website URL of where we can view your submission
e. Whether you available on 23 May 2008, 6am
f. Please indicate if you are above 21 years of age, are able bodied, fit and used to being outdoors, e.g., you have hiked, biked, done long nature walks.

Winners will be decided loosely based on the following criteria:
1) Creativity
2) Persuasiveness
3) Contribution to Cyrene Reef
4) Audience size
5) Ability to actually attend the trip!

For those who worry that they cannot write well, feel free to convince us by how you can contribute / help / act for Cyrene Reef.

Submissions are now open for the trip to Cyrene on 23 May 2008. If you think you can wake up at the wee hours of the morning at 6am, join us! Write in now!

Closing date: 18 May 2008, Sunday, 2359hrs
Winners will be announced on 19 May 2008, Monday, 1500hrs

Read full article here

Monday, May 12, 2008

TICE Eco Camp and May Day Dugong Ambassador

Monkey has been busy. Despite having to grade papers, complete my independent study module essay, organize a end of semester grad party and coordinating a million things, I found time to give a talk at the TICE Eco Camp last Saturday, 10 May 2008.

It was a busy day for me. I finished the slides at 5am, arrive at the presentation at 9.30am, finished the talk at 11am, walked to the National Youth Environment Forum at 11.30am, left at 2.15pm for the talk on History of Singapore at National Museum of Singapore then back to NYEF at 4.30pm for the round up. Finally rounded the day with a nice wholesome dinner at Food for Thought, my absolute favourite restaurant for now. Nothing beats supporting a social enterprise.

On Sunday, mother surprised me with a sighting of this rambling leafmonkey on Lianhe Zaobao. Apparently the news article of the May Day Dugong Ambassador outreach at Chek Jawa finally came out!

Excerpt on Naked Hermit Crab and me.

The full article. Click for full size.

Well today has been full of surprises. When I went to interview somebody for the religion project today, turned out that the person attended the TICE eco camp and I realized that I forgot to talk more about the groups I am involved in (NHC and Toddycats). Ah well, we had a nice chat about that. In fact I saw many familiar faces at the talk - Gaytri from NHC and Yi Han from SAVE. I heard many SAVE members were there that day. Hope I managed to actually share some new ideas with everybody. I know how tiring it is to hear the same thing all the time.

A few hours ago, I returned home to find several comments on my blog from participants who attended my talk. Thank you all so much for the encouraging comments! I really appreciate it. One of the participants blogged about the camp and was very insightful. That is something we all need to be - being critical. Do ask me any question you want and give me any and all brutal feedback to help me improve. Thank you!

Read full article here

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Greening our lives

Giving a talk at the TICE eco camp later today and just finished the slides! It's been a hectic week but I'm glad I completed all my work. I'm no good to anyone if I can't finish my work.

The theme of the camp is recycling but I thought I'll offer a more holistic overview to recycling and "greening" out lifestyles in general. It sounds cliche to be talking about the 3Rs but I guess it has certain value in it. At least for beginners, it's a start!

Read full article here

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Magical Wonderland Cyrene

Truth be told, I'm a shore newbie. But after today's Cyrene baptism, I am proud to say that I've seen all manners of marine organism now.

As the sun rose over Cyrene, a new chapter of my life dawned. If my life was a book, the chapter would probably read "happy and exciting days". I've never seen so much, experienced so much, done so much all in 3 hours. Wearing my knees out was a mere pittance of a price to pay for such rich an experience.

I was tasked to walk around the perimeter of Cyrene today to map the outline of the patch reef. Along the way, I saw a stingray, possibly an eel and a dozen octopi that did not hesitate squirting in the water to warn the blind monkey that's about to step on their toes. I saw mushroom corals, giant boulder corals and all manner of color and size of soft corals bigger than my entirety. Meanwhile, a monkey was heard squealing and squeaking all the way from Bukom to Jurong Island.

I would never forget my first encounter with the stingray.

Monkey walk walk walk walk walk walk listening to the tiny beeps of her GPS receiver.

Suddenly, a flash of blue on the corner of her left eye.

"EEEEEEEEEEEK" squealed the Monkey

"EEEEEEEEEEEK" squeaked the stingray

Both ran off in opposite direction like headless chicken only to bump into yet more scarily big animals on the edge of the sea.

Sneaky reef crabs with threatening red eyes snapped away at my feet as Monkey leapt from rock to coral rubble. Eels and fishes dart away from the impending monkey foot of death. Nonetheless...

Perhaps it's because I had so many firsts on Cyrene in one morning that it's forever going down as the magical wonderland in my book.

Photos of Cyrene can be seen here.

Cyrene Carnival: Edition 3

This is yet another call for submission for Cyrene Blogging Carnival. The 3rd edition was supposed to be due last week but due to lack of submission, I was unable to find the time to hunt for blog posts floating out there.

Please do write about Cyrene and leave the link in my blog post or visit our Facebook Group "I want to go Cyrene Reef" and leave your blog post in the discussion boards.

Even if you have never been to Cyrene, do write about why you would like to go and you never know when you might get an invite from us to join us on our working trips!

Read full article here

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Next time you eat Sharks Fin, think of Sherman

Courtesy of the Sherman's Lagoon comics strip, thanks to Otterman for the alert!

If you do a search for dried sharks fin on you will find tons of listing from peru, mexico, united kingdom, sri lanka and even, yes, Singapore.

There is even an ongoing petition to to stop the distribution of sharks fin.

Related news:

Read full article here