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The Ocean Blog

Bottom trawl treasures from the shallow Chukchi Seafloor near the Canada Basin: sea stars , brittle stars , clams, some snails and crabs. View the “Under Arctic Ice ” photo essay to learn more.
Many jellyfish in the class Hydrozoa, such as this hydromedusa Aglantha digitale , are transparent and easily overlooked. Learn more about hydrozoan jellies and other jellyfish , and see more...
The polar bear ( Ursus maritimus ) is found in the Arctic and classified as a vulnerable species by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. This marine mammal can swim more than 30 miles when sea...
Research at Hare Harbor in Quebec, Canada has revealed important clues about the connections between the Inuit peoples of Northern Canada and the Basque whalers of Spain and France. Excavations at...
Dryodora glandiformis is a ctenophore found in Arctic and Northern European waters, bearing a pair of long and lovely tentacles.
Polar bears are threatened by the loss of sea ice in the Arctic . They walk for miles on the ice shelves to access different parts of the sea to hunt seals and other food. But as the ice melts as the...
The Arctic comb jelly or sea nut ( Mertensia ovum ) is commonly found in the surface (top 50 meters) in cold, northern waters. Like other cydippid ctenophores, it has two tentacles fringed with...
At a recent staff meeting a Smithsonian colleague mentioned that one of his pastimes this summer has been keeping tabs on the Arctic sea ice. The question that's on many Arctic-watchers' minds is...
Hoping to hear bowhead whales , NOAA marine mammal scientist Sue Moore listens to real-time sounds from an underwater hydrophone.
Found in Arctic waters, this rare deep-water species of larvacean , Oikopleura gorskyi , eats by filtering particles from the seawater it drifts through. Larvaceans build 'houses' around themselves...
At the ends of the Earth, life thrives despite extreme conditions. In the Arctic and Southern Oceans, organisms have evolved adaptations to cope with year-round cold and six months of darkness. But...
In many species of copepods , males are rare and short-lived. This male of Scaphocalanus acrocephalus is readily distinguished from the female by features of his antennae and tail. View the “Under...
Drilling near the North Pole, Dr. Jan Backman reveals a brief moment in time when the Arctic was subtropical. More about world climate change can be found in our Climate Change featured story .
The Arctic Studies Center's excavation site map of Hare Harbor maps some of the community's excavated structures that archeologists have unearthed. An Inuit house, blacksmith shop, and cookhouse are...
A sea star , Hymenaster pellucidus , brought up from a benthic ROV dive. View the “Under Arctic Ice” photo essay to learn more.
Geologist Charles Paull (Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute) investigates geologic features similar to pingos (Earth covered ice mounds found in the Arctic) on the Arctic Ocean floor where...
Arctic cod have a special protein that keeps their blood from freezing in ice-cold Arctic waters.
New technology is making it possible for scientists to go where they’ve never gone before, the depths of the icy Arctic Ocean . By collecting organisms and mapping the seafloor, researchers can...
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