More Human impacts

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...
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...
As a consumer, you can choose what kinds of seafood to buy. Some species are in good supply and make excellent choices. Others have declined dramatically due to overfishing or environmental factors...
The Kemp’s ridley is a “riddler” among sea turtles . Although the species was initially recognized in 1880, scientists didn't know where it nested until 80 years later, when a film documenting about...
Rivulus fish live in bodies of water that sometimes become contaminated with hydrogen sulfide—an extremely toxic compound that smells like rotten eggs. When this happens, the adaptable fish wiggle...
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...
This photo of a freshly cut dorsal fin from a scalloped hammerhead shark ( Sphyrna lewini ) , was taken in 2006 on a long-lined fishing boat in Cocos Island, 300 miles off the Pacific coast of Costa...
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 .
This map is based on electronic tagging of Atlantic bluefin tuna ( Thunnus thynnus ) from 1996 to 2007. A team of international researchers officially classified the Atlantic bluefin as endangered in...
CREDIT: Wikimedia User “Fisherman” Because of consumer demand for sashimi (a fresh raw seafood dish), the fishing pressure on Atlantic bluefin tuna is extraordinarily high. The sale of a single...
In coastal towns and cities, vast areas now inhabited by super markets, houses, roads, parking lots, hotels and schools were once occupied by mangrove forests . Growing out of the ocean and onto the...
A placard warns residents that water—and anything else—that goes own this storm drain makes its way into the Potomac River and, eventually the ocean.
Algae, like all organisms, normally grow in balance with their ecosystems, limited by the amount of nutrients in the water. But sometimes, certain species of algae reproduce so rapidly that they...
Named for the radiant blue color on its back and sides, the blue shark ( Prionace glauca ) traverses the world’s temperate and tropical seas. Known for traveling great distances and being a swift...
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...
Traditional fishing techniques now involve monofilament nets, with snorkelers diving down to ensure the bigger fish don't get away. Many people still fish traditionally along the eastern coast of...
In the Pacific Ocean, four ocean currents merge to form the North Pacific gyre, also known as the North Pacific Subtropical High, which spans the western US to Japan, and Hawaii to California. This...
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...
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