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The Ocean Blog

A dredge from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers can be seen removing a sandbar off of Virginia Beach, VA. This type of removal occurs in order to clean up the seafloor or to allow for large ships to...
Necora puber , also known as the velvet swimming crab, may not be as soft as the name implies. The crab's red eyes and aggressive nature have resulted in a second nickname, devil's crab . As if it...
How do we know what coral reefs looked like hundreds of years ago? Often times, we are simply left wondering. Scientists can get an idea from naturalist recordings, but there are many unknowns and...
Seagrasses growing on the seafloor of the Chesapeake Bay rely on light to grow—but, thanks to pollution, that sunlight has become more scarce. Nutrient runoff from fertilizers causes microscopic...
Sometimes, a tragic event can become a powerful teaching opportunity. The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has the potential to capture students’ attention and stimulate discussion...
Imagine you’re an alien seeing Planet Earth for the first time. What do you see from your spacecraft? A blue planet with over 70% of its surface covered by ocean. From space it’s obvious how...
The threat that climate change poses to polar bears has received a lot of attention, but they are not the only Arctic species at risk. Ice-loving seals, such as harp, hooded and ringed seals, are...
Sea ice is typically viewed as the domain of physical and natural scientists, the oceanographers, marine biologists, climate modelers, and navigators of the world. It is easy to forget another...
Dr. Demian Chapman of the Institute for Ocean Conservation Science at New York’s Stony Brook University explains how DNA extraction from shark fins can identify the species of shark and where the...
The ocean, which we often break into five large ocean basins, covers 71 percent of the Earth's surface and holds over 1.3 billion cubic km of water. This massive space also holds over 99 percent of...
Since 1987, researchers have been tracking Phoenix, one of the last North Atlantic right whales living today. It's estimated that there are fewer than 500 of these whales alive today. Read her story...
Recorded on Feb. 15, 2011, award-winning ocean filmmaker Jean-Michel Cousteau addresses students and educators at the Third Student Summit on the Ocean and Coasts . Cousteau, president of the Ocean...
What is blue carbon? It's a term used to describe the carbon that is captured from the atmosphere by ocean ecosystems, mainly coastal mangroves, seagrasses and salt marshes. These coastal areas can...
Fossil fuels that power our cars, homes, and businesses add carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere. The ocean absorbs large portions of this CO2 and acts as a buffer against climate change . But, Dr...
White abalones are slow-moving, algae-eating mollusks. Rapid overharvesting since the 1970s has resulted in white abalones becoming the first marine invertebrate listed as endangered on the...
Oil leaks from cars and other vehicles contribute to ocean pollution.
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...
Overfishing and sedimentation have heavily impacted this reef off the western coast of Guam. More about coral reef ecosystems can be found in our Coral Reefs featured story .
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