Day 2

posted Feb 10, 2011, 4:51 AM by 1103 Phang Zi Han

I started off Day 2 with a trip around my neighbourhood, keeping my eyes open for species, both plant and animals. Interestingly, the area around my house housed numerous types of palm trees. I proceeded to Bedok Reservoir Park, which was a stone throw away from my house. There, I found numerous different species of trees including this peculiar species of trees which had orange markings on it. It seems to be paint but judging by the positioning of those markings, it could not have been paint but rather a colouration caused by the tree’s growth. Upon discussion with Gloria later in the day, I realized that it could have been caused by insects or other wildlife. At the reservoir, I found a species of spiders as well. It was rather tough to take a shot of that spider with my current camera thus I concluded that I needed a better camera, which I could loan from college later in the day.  Following that exploration to the reservoir, I attempted to match the species that I found to the guidebooks. However, including the species of plants that I had observed yesterday at the eco-garden, I was able to obtain a list of 19 species. It might be that Gloria had documented the other species for we had split guidebooks.

At around 2pm, we met up in college and shared our experiences in our neighbourhoods. We compared pictures of the plants that we took and exchanged pointers on how best to capture the image. We began experimenting with various functions of the compact camera in a bid to take the best shots possible. Upon exchanging photos, we realized that there were species that actually overlapped and it further proves that we have to include that species in our list. Subsequently, we went around college, taking pictures of the species there and found even more species that overlapped our knowledge of where the species could be found. For instance, we both remembered the royal palms that lined the roads towards change airport control tower and during our tour around the college, we recognized the exact same species lining the entrance of our college! Though the college houses numerous species that we recognize, there were certain instances where we were unable to identify the plant species correctly. This further emphasizes the need for us to document and assign specific characteristics to identify the specific species. It is indeed apt for amateurs like us to start the building of the database as we would know exactly what is needed for us to identify the species and know what characteristics would be essential in identifying a particular species.

We ended the discussion with a collation of the species that we have both listed, at grand total of 55 species. Tomorrow morning will be a focused examination of the screenshots of the iphone application that Dr Andrew had sent to us. Using those screenshots, we will attempt to understand how the program works and from there, provide constructive feedback from the perspective of an average user. The meeting with the developer would be starting at 4 thus we might have time to continue collating the list and browsing through the guidebooks.