I have had to leave the island for a few days in order to to make arrangements for boats to other Islands and to get some supplies and so I am currently in the town of Mersing .The town of Mersing is situated on the south east coast of Maylasia and it sits against the backdrop of the south China sea. It reminds me somewhat of Krabi in southern Thailand but appears to be more busy and the people here appear to be more friendly as most seem to either smile, nod and or acknowledge me. It is the hub for boats going to Tioman and many of the other 40+ typical picture postcard tropical islands that are all apart of the Seribuat Achipelago. Below is the clinic where I had to go and get anti-biotics as I had got my foot infected when I accidentally trod on a sea-urchin!
I have to admit it was a treat walking around the town today which you can do in just under an hour and not seeing the big yellow M. There is a KFC present and to be honest that suits just fine with me as I prefer KFC out the 3 regular / main stream fast food outlets.Elderly gentleman take it easy playing drafts in small groups in shaded shelters by the roadside and groups of young women are doing the same concentrated in small groups but instead of playing drafts they are all using their SMART phones.Mopeds are extremely popular here and it is quite amusing seeing families all crammed in on a single machine at times.
Above shows the Mosque of the town that plays the verses from the Koran during early morning, early afternoon, late afternoon, dusk and evening, a total of 5 times a day that can be heard all over the town and including my hotel room, however it rather soft, pleasant and some-what calming.Above shows the beach at Mersing which isn't fit for beach bums due to it being littered and inter-tidal. "Yes thats right inter-tidal", maybe no good for beach bums but certainly good for Waders and Terns that use it as a high tide roost.As with all estuary based villages & towns fishing boats come and go using the high water to get out of the river-mouth in to the open water.Only 26 great crested terns were present today (above) but Terek Sandpipers peaked at c260, with a mixed flock of greater and lesser sandplovers reaching just on 40+, 2 redshank, 27 greenshank, 11 common sandpiper, 1 ruddy turnstone, 1 1st winter sanderling, 11 whimbrel but best of all a single grey tailed tattler was present briefly as I arrived but spooked when a white bellied sea-eagle flew over heading towards its nest nearby.
Also seen whilst walking around the edge of the town today were 4 pied hornbills, 2 collared kingfisher and a white belied sea-eagle on the nest. Tomorrow I am heading to Tioman Island in order to see what is happening out on the waters surrounding the islands. *(Just on a brief note as readers of this blog are aware I am truly in to my Waders of the Thames Estuary and so when reading my emails and finding out that Paul W had found a Semi P Sand at East Tilbury I was gutted, pleased for Paul, really pleased as he Mr East Tilbury and a "Wader Buff" but Semi P is a bloody good record for the Thames. This is one of the ones that niggles. I am to then learn that the presumed same bird was also seen earlier on when found by Richard B at Cliffe. I have seen some good waders over the years at both of these localities including, 2 white rumped's 1 at ET and 1 on the "dark side of the Thames", buff breasted sand (dark side) several pecs, & 2KP's both sides, greater sandplover, marsh sand (dark side) lesser legs, temminks stints and so Semi P. Nice one and congrats to all involved but especially Paul and Richard)*.
Whilst jumping on and off boats from mainland to island & island to island I am listening to the iPod as ever and at present Zero 7 is top of my "most played list" and so I thought I'd share the tune of the moment with you. "Hope you like it"