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The Ocean Blog

Several species of amphipod like this one, Gammarus wilkitzkii , live permanently within Arctic sea ice . These animals are endemic, meaning they only live here. They acclimate to a wide range of...
What can students do to help the ocean? It turns out, a lot! These students from California are among dozens from the U.S. and Mexico who are developing action plans on ocean and climate-related...
"Harlequin shrimp normally live in pairs and their main diet is starfish... It takes a good eye and patience to find this beautiful shrimp, which looks like candy.” -- Nature's Best photographer,...
Most lobsters are a mottled brown color, but sometimes you can see a strange orange or blue lobster. And then, when lobsters are cooked, they turn bright red. Why is there such a rainbow of lobster...
Another common species of sargassum shrimp, Leander tenuicornis (Palaemonidae), can be spotted by its long transparent claws or "chelae". Very similar shrimp are found in near shore habitats all...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/islandconservation/6951137074/in/photostream/
A squat lobster and blackbelly rosefish find shelter on a Lophelia pertusa coral reef off the southeastern United States. The Johnson-Sea-Link submersible captured this image in 2009. Explore more in...
This shrimp farm in southern Belize is just one example of how mangroves worldwide are giving way to human development. In just the last decade, at least 35 percent of the world's mangroves have been...
This close-up photo of a right whale's head shows dozens of hitchhikers—tiny crustaceans known as whale lice, or cyamid amphipods. They live on the rough patches of skin (known as callosities) on...
Thalassinidean shrimp ( Thalassinidea ) build complex burrows deep in the mud. More about mangroves ecosystem can be found in our Mangroves featured story .
“It is strange to think of a sea turtle as an ecosystem,” says Amanda Feuerstein, program coordinator and research assistant at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, “but they are…...
The Smithsonian's Department of Invertebrate Zoology has a collection of over 57,000 specimens from over 5,700 sites in the Gulf of Mexico, which are now catalogued on Google Earth . Below is a tiny...
The waters of New Guinea teemed with exotic fishes and crabs, which were faithfully depicted by William Dampier’s artist. When Dampier’s book A Voyage to New Holland was published in 1703,...
The open ocean is surprisingly barren to the naked eye. Every now and again you will encounter a school of fish and their attendant predators, but most of the life that you find is gathered around...
A new wave of farming has come to the ocean. It’s called aquaculture. And it’s a way to grow and harvest mussels and other healthy, tasty types of seafood. Explore other videos that capture the...
For being so big, right whales eat very small food, which they catch using baleen. Baleen is the series of fringed plates hanging in right whales' mouths that are used to strain seawater for food...
This species of amphipod , Eusirus holmii , was found both at the surface of Arctic waters and as deep as 2000 meters (6562 feet). Researchers have found that while the amphipod inhabits the sea ice...
Can you spot the amphipod ( Phronima atlantica ) in the below photo? She's the transparent lobster-looking animal in the middle, surrounded by her own eggs -- inside a sac that once was the "barrel"...
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