Giant clam (Credit: Neo Mei Lin) An international team of marine researchers led by Dr Neo Mei Lin and Associate Professor Peter Todd from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has recently published a comprehensive study on the status of giant clams worldwide. Between 2014 to 2016, the scientists involved in this [...]
(Credit: Pexels) Amazing diversity hides beneath the surface of the ocean where tiny microbes work busily; transforming carbon dioxide from the atmosphere into oxygen, converting sunlight into energy, and breaking down nitrogen gas to serve as food. University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science researcher Victoria Coles and her team have developed [...]
(Credit: Flip Nicklin/ Minden Pictures/Getty Images) Narwhals — the unicorns of the sea — show a weird fear response after being entangled in nets. Scientists say this unusual reaction to human-induced stress might restrict blood flow to the brain and leave the whales addled. (From NPR/ by Nell Greenfieldboyce) -- The narwhals swim hard and dive [...]
(Credit: Virginia Institute of Marine Science) Hundreds of people came out to map the king tides in coastal Virginia in November. Virginia Institute of Marine Science researcher Derek Loftis explains how that is helping the region better prepare as flooding worsens. (From Oceans Deeply/ by Jessica Leber) -- The king tide floods came on a [...]
(Credit: Projeto TAMAR) A University of Central Florida biologist whose groundbreaking work tracking the movements of sea turtle yearlings in the North Atlantic Ocean attracted international attention has completed a similar study in the South Atlantic with surprising results. (From Phys.org) -- South Atlantic sea turtles do not passively ride prevailing currents as historically assumed, [...]
(Credit: Graphic by Kathy Seibert/LLNL) Arctic sea ice loss of the magnitude expected in the next few decades could impact California's rainfall and exacerbate future droughts, according to new research led by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists. (From Science Daily)-- The dramatic loss of Arctic sea ice cover observed over the satellite [...]
Whale shark gliding off Sail Rock in the Gulf of Thailand. (Credit: iStockphoto/Dirk-Jan Mattaar) An international research project tracking whale sharks is being praised as a unique collaboration using 'citizen science' and NASA technology. (From ABC News Australia/By David Weber) -- The project relied on people sending in photos, taken over many years [...]
Scallop (Credit: Ceri Jones/Haven Diving Services) It’s hard to see what’s so special about a scallop. It looks a lot like a clam, mussel or any other bivalve. Inside its hinged shell lurks a musclebound creature that’s best enjoyed seared in butter. (From New York Times/ By Carl Zimmer) -- But there’s something [...]
(Click to enlarge). A North Atlantic right whale mother and calf (Credit: Brian Skerry) A new study of more than 100 North Atlantic right whales over 15 years shows the analysis of a hormone product in the animals’ waste can provide information on their stress levels and health. (From Boston Globe/ By [...]
(Click to enlarge) (Credit: Adam Summers, Friday Harbor Lab, University Of Washington) Scientists have formally identified a new species of snailfish, the deepest ever caught in the Mariana Trench. A related species has been filmed but never collected. (From National Geographic/ By Craig Welch) — It’s cute, almost pink, and about [...]
(Click to enlarge) (Credit: University of East Anglia) Squid, sole, dogfish, herring and cod all feed on baby jellyfish – according to new research from the University of East Anglia and the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas). The moon jellyfish is commonly found around the coastlines of Britain. They’re [...]
Member Highlight: Learning From The Past: What The Ice Age Can Teach Us About The Future Of Our Coastlines
(Click to enlarge) Exposure ages in Peggy’s Cove boulders reveal the Laurentide Ice Sheet, which covered Eastern and Central Canada in the Ice Age, receded here around 14,000 years ago as well. (Credit: Dalhousie University). About 14,000 years ago, planet Earth was defrosting. Expansive ice sheets that covered [...]
Sea snakes are an evolutionary success story. With about 70 species, they're the most diverse reptile group in the ocean, outnumbering sea turtle species 10-to-1. They sport a range of physical adaptations for life at sea, including a flattened oar-like tail for paddling and the abilities to smell underwater, hold their breath for hours and go for months without a drink. And although they're not powerful swimmers, they have spread throughout the Pacific and Indian Oceans, ranging from Japan to New Zealand and from South Africa to Central America.
All liquids always contain gases in a greater or lesser concentration depending on the pressure and temperature to which it is subjected. These gases almost always end up as more or less small bubbles on the surface of the liquid. When these bubbles explode, especially if they are microscopic, minuscule drops are expelled at great velocity, and the drops almost instantly travel notable distances from the surface of the liquid that they came from.
Melting glaciers might be making ocean water more acidic, an unexpected finding that's given scientists new cause for concern. A new study published yesterday in the journal Nature Climate Change suggests surprising ways that climate change is drastically altering the water chemistry in deep seas—a process that may happen faster than researchers anticipated.
Methane-eating bacteria anchor the food chains and ecosystem occupying the otherworldly flooded caves of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Scientists recently completed a comprehensive survey of the unique ecosystem, the most in-depth yet. They published their findings this week in the journal Nature Communications.
To graduate student Sarah Fortune, the rocky crags off Baffin Island were just part of its stark beauty. Then, she saw a group of eight bowhead whales rubbing their bodies against the large boulders. Using aerial drones to watch the whales, she saw that they were using the rocks to help remove loose, dead skin.
The melting Antarctic ice stream that is currently adding most to sea-level rise may be more resilient to change than previously recognized. New radar images reveal the mighty Pine Island Glacier (PIG) to be sitting on a rugged rock bed populated by big hills, tall cliffs and deep scour marks.
A team of researchers form the University of Warwick has devised a new way to identify what is known as the "lost 99%" of plastic particles in the world's oceans.
As you recover from a hopefully restful period of giving thanks and feasting, I hope you are getting ready to join the National Ocean Sciences Bowl (NOSB) for the third biggest giving day of the year - #GivingTuesday. Each year, the NOSB features a theme that is both timely and regionally significant to the Finals [...]
Australian scientists are optimistic that a fertility treatment for coral could help regenerate the Great Barrier Reef. The 2,300 kilometer long coral reef -- a UNESCO World Heritage Site -- has been extensively damaged by a process known as coral bleaching in which warm water stresses the organism and causes it to die.
There are a lot of scientific eyes on west Antarctica right now, for some pretty obvious reasons. The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) holds a lot of water – enough to push up sea levels around the world by 3m or so.
The study, published in PLOS Computational Biology, developed a new method combining behavioral analyses with a computer model to map the chain of direct interactions in a school of fish. The international research team, that includes the University of Bristol, found individual fish pay attention to its neighbours when the school moves together.
When 40 startups from all over the world gathered at Stanford University in November, it was not a typical Silicon Valley pitch day. The entrepreneurs competing in the Fish 2.0 Innovation Forum saw themselves more like the next Cargill than the next Google.
When Alifereti Tawake was a boy growing up on Fiji's Kadavu Island, his grandfather would go out fishing in the morning and return before Tawake left for school. "That would be my lunch," Tawake says. "Fresh fish." Over time, his grandfather would stay out for longer and longer stretches of time, until one day in 1988 when he didn't come back at all; his family believes that he died at sea. By then, it was clear to many Fijian fishermen that the marine resources they harvested for food and livelihoods were dwindling. Fiji's shift from a subsistence economy to a commercial one left its coasts largely depleted.
The Stellar's sea cow went extinct within 27 years of it being first spotted by humans. An enormous skeleton of a sea cow, an extinct beast that roamed the icy waters surrounding the North Pacific near the Bering Sea, was found almost entirely intact, buried in the sands of a beach in the Komandorsky Nature Reserve in Siberia, Russia.
Researchers want to enlist surfers, scuba divers and anglers to monitor hard-to-reach areas vulnerable to climate change. Satellites are good at measuring temperatures over vast stretches of ocean, but less accurate at monitoring a particularly important type of marine environment—coastlines. Now help could come from an unlikely source: a water sports “navy” of surfers, anglers, scuba divers and others. A U.K.-led team of researchers has proposed this alliance to help gather coastal climate data in a recent paper in Frontiers in Marine Science.
The world uses 1 billion unrecyclable plastic straws a day – 500 million in the United States – an untold number of which end up in the ocean, polluting the water and coastlines and posing a deadly threat to sea turtles and other marine animals. The Lonely Whale Foundation’s “Strawless in Seattle” campaign resulted in the elimination of 2.3 million disposable plastic straws in the month of September in that city.
Teeth grew from the scales of primitive shark-like fish millions of years ago, research by scientists suggests. Old lineage cartilaginous fish like sharks, skates and rays that have skin which contained small spiky scales or "dermal denticles" may be the key, scientists say.
It’s fairly easy to predict what will happen to the turkeys tomorrow at the traditional pardoning ceremony at the White House. It’s much more difficult to predict what will happen with our weather and climate in the months and years ahead, but one thing we do know is that ocean observations play a crucial role in [...]
Have you ever dug your feet into the warm, soft surface of a white sand beach? Felt the fine, dry grains slide pleasurably between your toes? Thank a parrotfish. Specifically, thank it for its poop. Most of the sand on just about every white beach in the world is the product of generations of the strange family of fish digging their sturdy beaks into ocean-floor coral and chewing chunks of rocky organic matter down to powder. And now, researchers know how the swimming weirdos get through their stony meals without cracking their teeth.
Loss Of Protections For Marine Sanctuaries Could Threaten Oceanic Environment And Fisheries, Stanford Experts Say
The Trump administration is considering rolling back federal protections for a number of national monuments. While most are on land and relatively accessible, three are deep below the ocean’s surface and many miles from the mainland: the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument and the Rose Atoll Marine National Monument, both in the central Pacific Ocean, and the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument off the coast of New England. While most people will never explore the canyons and reefs of these watery realms, their value is hard to overestimate, according to Stanford scientists with years of experience exploring and studying these and adjacent areas.
A new study confirms what marine mammal researchers have suspected for a while: right whales use nearly the entire eastern seaboard during the winter, and they move around a lot more than was previously thought. How long they spend in some areas of their range has also changed in recent years.
Member Highlight: Pacific Island Countries Could Lose 50-80 Percent Of Fish In Local Waters Under Climate Change
Many Pacific Island nations will lose 50 to 80 percent of marine species in their waters by the end of the 21st century if climate change continues unchecked, finds a new Nippon Foundation-Nereus Program study published in Marine Policy. This area of the ocean is projected to be the most severely impacted by aspects of climate change.
One patch of water in the center of the Pacific Ocean has remained virtually motionless for the past 1,000 years. Now, a recent study published online in Nature has uncovered some of the secrets of this mysterious "shadow zone," revealing not only why it has remained still for so long, but also what the ocean looked like a millennium ago.
In October last year, a fishing boat set out from Velddrif, a small town on South Africa’s west coast. It sailed northwest for about 25 nautical miles (46 kilometres), then turned sharply and headed back the way it had come. Staying clear of coastal settlements, it entered the West Coast National Park marine protected area — a strictly no-fishing zone — where it slowed down and began to sail in a zigzag pattern. “It was obvious what they were doing,” says Niel Malan, a marine biologist who works in South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs in Cape Town. “They were poaching.”
Antarctica is getting a little hot under the collar. Just under the frozen wasteland of the world's coldest continent are some seriously hot rocks, which are helping to melt its ice sheet and create lakes and rivers, a study found.
A new paper published in Nature Communications serves as an excellent reminder of the long-term value of ocean research and data collection. This paper provides the first holistic analysis of the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS), which is a legacy of the Census of Marine Life – a global initiative that COL managed for a [...]
It looks like a baby manta ray flapping its wings as it glides through the water. But it’s actually an aquatic robot which swims at a speed of twice its body length per second and can operate for up to 10 hours. Meet the MantaDroid.
Coral reefs, seagrass meadows and mangrove forests work together to make the Coral Triangle of Indonesia a hotspot for marine biodiversity. The system supports valuable fisheries and endangered species and helps protect shorelines. But it is in global decline due to threats from coastal development, destructive fishing practices and climate change.
You’re camping in the woods, about to tuck into some salmon you’ve caught when a bear appears. It’s waiting for you to eat your fish, so it can swoop in to eat you. This is a steal for the bear. For the price of a human, it’s bagged a human-salmon combo meal.
Canadian and US Department of Energy researchers have released 50 years' worth of data chronicling the deoxygenating cycles of a fjord off Canada's west coast, and detailing the response of the microbial communities inhabiting the fjord.
(Click to enlarge) Research plane over Totten Glacier. (Credit: Image courtesy of Imperial College London) Scientists believe they’ve identified a key process affecting the melting of an enormous glacier in East Antarctica, bigger than the state of California. And the effects may only worsen with future climate change. (From Scientific American / by [...]
Colorless, odorless, and potentially lethal, carbon monoxide is so feared by people that we have special monitors in our homes to detect it. But its accumulation in the blood helps elephant seals make deep dives in the ocean, researchers reported here last week at the biennial meeting of the Marine Mammal Society. Aside from helping explain how elephant seals can stay so deep for so long, the work could one day help people recover from traumatic events like heart attacks and organ transplants.
On Friday, I was pleased to see that the administration released the latest Climate Science Special Report, an 800-page examination of the state of climate science that is the first of two volumes of the Fourth National Climate Assessment. This extremely important report represents a Herculean task that involved scientists from multiple federal agencies (including [...]
(Click to enlarge). The Chukchi Ecosystem Observatory is maintained by a multi-institutional, multi-investigator partnership that includes the University of Alaska Fairbanks, the Alaska Ocean Observing System, the North Pacific Research Board, Olgoonik-Fairweather, Université Laval, and the University of Washington. On a recent research mission, University of Alaska Fairbanks scientists brought home the first [...]
Climate change is real. It’s caused by greenhouse-gas pollution released by human industrial activity. Its consequences can already be felt across every region and coastline of the United States—and, unless we stop emitting greenhouse gases soon, those consequences will almost certainly get worse. Those are the headline findings of the Climate Science Special Report, a sweeping and more than 800-page examination of the evidence. The report was published Friday by four agencies of the U.S. government and academics from across the country.