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The Ocean Blog

We drove down a long dirt road on the northern side of Curaçao looking for a remote place to snorkel and sample. After a 30-minute bumpy ride, our team stepped out of the car into a breeze and the...
This beautiful larval (baby) octopus was collected by scientists from the University of Miami during a research cruise in the Straits of Florida, a narrow channel between the Atlantic and the Gulf of...
Happy (early) Independence Day! For many of us in the United States, the 4th of July is a time to celebrate and reflect on our national heritage. In many ways, the U.S. grew up on the water and...
“The largest land migration of any animal on Earth, as many as 120 million crabs carpet the island in red as they move from the rain forest to the coast.” -- Nature's Best photographer, Stephen...
“As I set up for a sunset shot—one last, solitary surfer exited the water and I quickly fired a few frames trying to capture the serenity of the moment.” -- Nature's Best photographer, Karen Doody...
Anemone porcelain crabs may look delicate but they have their own sort of armor: a hard exoskeleton. They live under rocks, sponges, groups of feather stars, and even in giant anemones where they can...
The grasses and animals living in marshes help to filter water and stabilize shorelines, along with providing habitat for a variety of mammals, fish, shellfish and amphibians and a haven for...
What can students do to help the ocean? It turns out, a lot! These students from Alabama are among dozens from the U.S. and Mexico who are developing action plans on ocean and climate-related issues...
A still from SOLA: Louisiana Water Stories , part of the 19th Annual Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital.
Giant kelp ( Macrocystis pyrifera ) is large, brown algae that grows in dense forests along coasts around the world. Long stalks anchor each plant to the seafloor, and they grow meters high like...
Bull sharks cut a threatening figure with the largest recorded bull shark reaching 11.5 feet and 500 pounds. They prey on dolphins, birds, turtles, bony fish, and other species of shark. Catching...
The blue lined octopus may be small, growing to at most 15 cm, but it can be deadly: its venom can cause breathing failure in humans as well as other animals. Turtles can accidentally consume the...
When most people think of catfish, they think of a freshwater fish. But the striped eel catfish ( Plotosus lineatus ) is found in marine systems including coral reefs, estuaries, tide pools and other...
The sun sets over marshland near Ocean City, N.J.
A scientist, Chris Reddy from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, collects oil-laden "sand patties" on a Louisiana beach two years after the oil spill. Watch a video of Chris Reddy talking about...
In 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil tanker ran aground in Alaska’s Prince William Sound, spilling 11 million gallons of crude oil into the water and onto the beaches of the remote ecosystem. Richard Carson...
When most people think of iconic American landscapes, we think of places on land. Yellowstone, the Great Smoky Mountains, the Grand Canyon—these national parks are household names. But many Americans...
Sea stars ( Odontaster validus ) and sea urchins ( Sterechinus neumayeri ) spread over an algae-covered seafloor off the coast of Antarctica. These two species are often found living in association...
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