Marine animals discoveries off Indonesia


This video says about itself:

Diving in Bali is a document of an extraordinary expedition I made to Indonesia’s magical island of Bali in 2006 with Aquamarine Diving.

From Tulamben’s awesome USAT Liberty wreck, to the reef manta rays of Nusa Penida, via the fascinating macro marine life of Tulamben and Seraya Secrets, the footage covers the breadth of Bali’s fascinating underwater world.

The video features 158 species of marine life, and their common and scientific names are available by turning on the captions with the CC button under the video.

Viewers can now contribute subtitles for the marine life names in this video in many languages. Find out more here.

From Tulamben there is footage of the wreck of the USAT Liberty in both day time and night time, including the humphead parrotfish that spend the night there. Also from Tulamben are numerous marine live encounters from dives at the Drop-Off and the Coral Garden.

Just around the corner we make a dive at Seraya Secrets, a macro hotspot where I encountered seahorses and nudibranchs. From Padangbai on the east coast of Bali we have footage from The Blue Lagoon and Pura Jepun. From the island of Nusa Penida we have the manta ray cleaning station, Manta Point, and Ped.

From the National University of Singapore:

More than 12,000 marine creatures uncovered during West Java deep-sea exploration

Over a dozen new species of crabs, prawns and lobsters discovered; over 40 new records for Indonesia

April 17, 2018

Despite a stormy start thanks to Cyclone Marcus, scientists who participated in the South Java Deep Sea Biodiversity Expedition 2018 (SJADES 2018) had collected more than 12,000 creatures during their 14-day voyage to survey the unexplored deep seas off the southern coast of West Java, Indonesia.

The expedition team, consisting 31 researchers and support staff, were led by Professor Peter Ng, Head of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum of the National University of Singapore (NUS), and Professor Dwi Listyo Rahayu, Senior Research Scientist at the Research Center for Oceanography (RCO) of the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI). The NUS research team comprises scientists from the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum and the Tropical Marine Science Institute.

Some 800 species from over 200 families of sponges, jellyfish, molluscs, starfish, urchins, worms, crabs, prawns and fish were uncovered during the expedition. Over a dozen new species of hermit crabs, prawns, lobsters and crabs were discovered, and over 40 species of various kinds are new records for Indonesia.

Among the deep-sea creatures new to science is a crab that has fuzzy spines and blood-red eyes; a lobster with long arms and zebra-patterned shell; and a hermit crab with green eyes and orange banded pincers. …

63 stations sampled within a fortnight

The research team departed Muara Baru, Jakarta in Indonesia on 23 March 2018 on board Indonesian research vessel Baruna Jaya VIII. They sailed anti-clockwise towards Cilacap in southern Java and back, covering a total distance of 2,200 kilometres.

“14 days of shared challenges at sea has enabled us to forge strong ties with our Indonesian collaborators, and such links are important to the long-term scientific ties between our two countries,” said Prof Ng, chief scientist for the Singapore team. “On the research front, our teams have learnt a lot about how to conduct deep-sea science, handle the various equipment needed for such work, and had the opportunity to sample and examine a multitude of fantastic deep sea animals. We expect to identify more new species among the pickings of the expedition, and we certainly look forward to studying the specimens and data with our Indonesian friends.”

Prof Rahayu, chief scientist for the Indonesia team, said, “The Indonesian scientists benefitted both personally and professionally through this expedition, which was partly a capacity-building exercise for our young scientists. Through interacting with international scientists, they were exposed to new scientific techniques and methodologies in an environment that presents a different set of challenges from their own scientific specialities. Hopefully, such knowledge transfer and collaboration would build stronger and more resilient ties among between our two nations.”

About the expedition

The South Java Deep-Sea Biodiversity Expedition 2018 is the first concerted deep-sea biological exploration conducted by Singapore and Indonesia, to study deep-sea marine life in the largely unexplored part of the waters off the southern coast of West Java.

This unprecedented project is a reflection of the bold and collaborative spirit embodied in RISING50 — a celebration of 50 years of diplomatic relations between Singapore and Indonesia. This joint initiative reaffirms the depth and diversity of the long-standing collaboration between the academic and scientific communities of Singapore and Indonesia.

The samples collected will be studied by scientists from both countries. This is anticipated to take up to two years, and the results will be shared and discussed with the world at a special workshop that will be held in Indonesia in 2020. The outputs will then be collated and published in the museum’s science-citation journal, The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology.

Expedition results

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Javan warty pig filmed in wild for first time


This video says about itself:

The “World’s Ugliest Pig” Filmed In The Wild For The First Time

19 January 2018

With big tusks, a coarse grizzled coat, and massive fleshy protrusions on the sides of their faces, the Javan warty pig (Sus verrucosus) is probably deserving of the “world’s ugliest pig” title. But just because the porcine critter is not blessed in the looks department does not mean that the precipitously endangered species should be left to go extinct.

Slow lorises saved from criminal pet trade


This video says about itself:

Slow Lorises Rescued From Illegal Pet Trade | National Geographic

3 October 2017

Officials in West Sumatra, Indonesia, rescued nine slow lorises from being sold on the illegal pet market.

Six new sponge species discovered in Indonesia


This video says about itself:

9 June 2012

HD video of scuba diving at Bunaken National Marine Park near Manado city at North of Sulawesi island in Indonesia. Fascinating walls covered with sponges, soft and hard corals, huge green turtles and tiny nudibranches, colorful anemones with clown fishes, eagle rays, morays etc.

From ScienceDaily:

Six new sponge species and new symbiotic associations from the Indonesian coral triangle

September 18, 2017

Summary: The Indonesian coral reefs, located in the so-called coral triangle, are considered amongst the richest and most biodiverse places on Earth. Surprisingly, this impressive species diversity is still poorly known. Biologists now report the presence of 94 species of sponges, including six new to science and two new symbiotic sponge associations.

Comprising more than 17,000 islands, the Indonesian archipelago is one of the world’s most biodiverse places on Earth.

Sponges, aquatic organisms whose bodies consist of numerous pores to allow the ingress of water, are key components of this richness and play a fundamental role in the survival of coral reef habitats. Furthermore, they are also known for their medicinal benefits.

Unfortunately, due to the paucity of taxonomic expertise, the sponges from the Indonesian reefs are often ignored in monitoring surveys and conservation programmes, while their diversity is largely underestimated.

Researchers from the Italian Università Politecnica delle Marche and Università degli Studi di Genova, PharmaMar, Spain, and University of Sam Ratulangi, Indonesia, describe six new species in their paper in the open access journal, ZooKeys.

Inspired by their extraordinary biodiversity, the researchers teamed up with the pharmaceutical company PharmaMar to conduct several expeditions in the waters of North Sulawesi Island.

The authors reported a total of 94 demosponge species belonging to 33 families living in the North Sulawesi Island. Amongst them, there are six species new to science and two previously unknown symbiotic relationships.

Seven of the recorded species were collected for the very first time since their original description.

However, these findings are still scarce, given the abundance of the sponges in similar localities in the Indonesian archipelago.

In conclusion, the authors note that the marine diversity in Indonesia is still far from being well known.

“Thanks to this impressive diversity, these areas are important spots for diving tourism and require the urgent development of sustainable tourism practices”, they say.

A completely new group of sponges has been discovered, which scientists believe could be a key indicator species in measuring future mining impact in a region targeted for deep-sea mining of polymetallic (metal-rich) nodules. They are likely to be the most abundant nodule-dwelling animal in the area: here.

New deep-sea sponge could play a starring role in monitoring ocean health. Plenaster craigi grows on metal-filled rocks that are a target for mining, by Carolyn Gramling, 7:00am, October 10, 2017.

Java tiger not extinct?


Java tiger photo?

From the New York Times in the USA:

Tiger Species Thought Extinct Is Possibly Spotted in Indonesia

By JON EMONT

SEPT. 15, 2017

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Park rangers in Indonesia may have spotted an animal thought to live only in folklore and history books: a Javan tiger, declared extinct more than 40 years ago.

Rangers at Ujung Kulon National Park in West Java last month photographed a big cat unlike any previously seen in the preserve. The pictures, released this week, set off a flurry of speculation that one of Indonesia’s legendary species was still alive, and offered a rare bit of positive environmental news to a country in which natural places are being destroyed at an alarming rate.

“This used to be Javan tiger habitat,” Mamat Rahmat, the head of conservation at the park, told the local news media. “We hope that they’re still there.”

The photograph, which circulated across social media, prompted the World Wildlife Fund to support an expedition in search of the supposed tiger.

Despite the rangers’ excitement, some conservationists were skeptical that the cat really was a Javan tiger. “When the video is frozen the effect is that it looks like a tiger”, said Wulan Pusparini, a tiger expert at the Wildlife Conservation Society, who viewed video footage of the animal. However, when the animal was seen moving, she said, it more closely resembled a leopard. Javan leopards are an endangered species, and are rarely seen.

Java is roughly the size of Pennsylvania, but with more than 140 million people it is the most heavily populated island in the world. It was once home to thousands of endemic species, but hunting and development have led to a mass extinction.

Only a few national parks in West Java contain what is left of the island’s large fauna, which include just 60 rhinos and a small population of leopards. Of the three subspecies of Indonesian tigers, two — the Bali tiger and the Javan tiger — have been declared extinct. The Sumatran tiger still exists on Sumatra, but it is considered critically endangered, the result of hunting and rapid deforestation.

“Javan tigers have been extinct for three generations,” Ms. Wulan said. She said she wished the Indonesian public would get as excited about saving endangered animals as they have been this week about the potential for discovering an extinct species.

“That’s the Javan leopard”, she said of the mysterious cat. “That’s the last large carnivore on Java. You would hope people would get excited about it.”

Ujung Kulon National Park is mostly densely forested, so it is possible even for large animals like rhinos or tigers to hide.

Scientists have filmed one of the world’s rarest, and ‘ugliest’, pigs in a forest in Java, Indonesia. The Javan warty pig is under such threat from hunting and habitat loss that conservationists surveying its habitat believed it might already have been driven to extinction: here.