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Frogfish are skilled hunters and some species are capable of blending into local environments such as coral reefs . A frogfish can camouflage itself so well that prey fish will swim close by without...
An orange brisingid starfish sits on a large reef of Lophelia pertusa, cold-water corals in the Gulf of Mexico, at 450 m depth as a school of fish swims above. They have many arms—up to 20!—covered...
Great White Sharks breach to hunt -- with split-second timing they grab an unsuspecting seal or sea lion in one swift snatch. Follow the action in this slideshow of a breaching sequence .
“It’s a little appreciated fact that most of the animals in our ocean make light,” says Edie Widder, biologist and deep sea explorer at ORCA. In this TED talk, she shows incredible film and photos...
A thresher shark’s long tail fin helps not only its swimming ability, but also its ability to hunt. It can use the fin to herd and trap schooling fish by swimming in increasingly smaller circles...
Adult green sea turtles ( Chelonia mydas ) spend most of their time grazing in seagrass meadows. It's estimated that before Columbus arrived in America in 1492, the number of green turtles supported...
This image from a scanning electron micrograph magnifies the tiny teeth that cover the surface of the giant squid’s tongue-like organ, or radula . Seven rows of sharp teeth help direct tiny pieces of...
Not all sharks are a dull gray: the coral catshark ( Atelomycterus marmoratus ), for example, is vibrantly colored. These sharks, which reach more than 2 feet long, live among coral reefs, eating...
One of the first signs of a sick coral reef is seaweed creeping across the corals, stealing their precious sunny real estate. Healthy corals, however, aren't completely hopeless: in some reefs, small...
Great White Sharks breach to hunt -- with split-second timing they grab an unsuspecting seal or sea lion in one swift snatch. Follow the action in this slideshow . More about the great white shark...
Weighing 600 pounds (around 272kg) and having a 30 foot (around 9 meters) arm span, the largest recorded giant pacific octopus was truly enormous. Giant pacific octopuses are powerful predators that...
Like octopods and cuttlefishes, giant squid have eight arms. But they use their two much longer feeding tentacles to seize prey. The tentacles have powerful suckers at the ends. More about the giant...
Tiny Wilson's Storm-Petrels ( Oceanites oceanicus ) are not much bigger than sparrows, but are comfortable in wild oceanic conditions. To catch their small crustacean food, they gracefully dart and...
Phoenix is seen skim feeding off the coast of Maine in August 2004. More about the right whale can be found in our Tale of a Whale featured story .
A huge colony of brittlestars (likely Ophiacantha rosea ) covers the peak of a seamount in the deep ocean. What’s the attraction? Food! Their arms reach out for tiny food particles carried by the...
"Open Wide" spread from Citizens of the Sea by Nancy Knowlton.
Smithsonian Marine Science Network Postdoctoral Fellow, Seabird McKeon, returns from the Smithsonian field site in Belize. Together with Dan Barshis of Stanford University, Seabird reports on the...
The sargassum frogfish Histrio histrio (Antennariidae) is a small but voracious predator - it can ingest animals up to it’s own size! The fins of the frogfish are perfect for creeping around in the...
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