The haze season was finally over! There were more rain showers in November which was good to hunt for fungi and wild mushrooms. I found many of them at Zhenghua Forest, Kampong Chantek Nature Trail, Venus Drive and Sembawang Forest, a new macro site introduced to us by Endy.
These orange mushrooms appear to glow when a LED light was placed behind them. My first sighting of such unique species found on a rotten tree trunk at Venus Drive.
Another group of rare fungi was found at Kampong Chantek Nature Trail. It has a very thin stalk with a tiny cap of about 2 mm.
A cluster of small mushrooms was also spotted here.
On November 28, Endy led us to a forested area near Sembawang. It is believed to be the last greenery from the early Malay settlement. We found quite a number of mushroom species at Sembawang Park, our meeting point.
This cluster looks gorgeous against the morning light.
These two sets of mushrooms looks interesting too. Are they of the same species?
From here, we walked about 200 metres cutting across some private residential houses to arrive at our new macro site.
Subjects spotted include various species of spiders, grasshoppers, katydids, changeable lizards, frog, mangrove crabs, dragonflies, moth, caterpillar, etc. My favourite image from this trip is a spider resting on a branch of backlit leaves.
Although I have been to Zhenghua Forest many times in the past 2 years, it never fails to excite me. There are always surprises and new discoveries. Here is a common leaf beetles sandwiched between two dewdrops.
Two months ago, I spotted for the first time, 15 leaf-footed baby bugs with their newly hatched egg shells nearby. This time there was only a lone baby next to 1 hatched and 7 un-hatched eggs. Now I know that freshly born babies are red in colour. They will change to black within an hour or so.
This is a big group of 14 babies that were already turned into black colour and abandoned their egg shells.
I mentioned in my earlier posts that leaf-footed bugs often vary in coloration between their 5 moults. Based on my observation, the colour of freshly moulted individual tends to have a mixture of purplish orange during their earlier moults but more towards pink when they moult in the later stage as shown in this image.
Zhenghua Forest is also a good location to find mushrooms. This should be a Mycenoporella species.
This is a large cluster of tiny mushrooms about 3 mm in size growing on a dead twig. Not sure about this species but their gills are beautiful when examined up close.
One of my wish list is to get a shot of 2 pairs of mating leaf beetles in a single frame which is not impossible as it is common to find a few pairs in the early morning at Zhenghua Forest. I have no luck so far but this image of two mating species upon the same perch is something beyond my imagination. I first spotted the mating beetles but they flew off when I tried to get too close. It was a blessing in disguise as they landed on a leaf where a pair of grasshoppers were also having a private affair, some 3 metres away. The grasshoppers didn’t bother by the intrusion, it was the beetle pair that was a little uncomfortable where they moved and paused along the perch and sometimes moving under it. I was fortunate to get some decent shots before the beetles flew away again.
This is certainly a superb moment of insect shot to end another fruitful month of macro photography!