More Pacific islands

The pre-industrial American landscape was once rightly described as a place where “the deer and the antelope roam.” On land, we take it for granted that the plant-eating deer and antelope far...
Dr. Claude Payri, a researcher working on the Moorea Biocode Project , collects samples on the reef slope of Moorea, French Polynesia. More about the Island of Moorea can be found in our Scientists...
Laysan albatrosses ( Phoebastria immutabilis ) are incredible birds. They have a wingspan of more than 6 feet, soaring vast distances without flapping their wings. They can go years without even...
Picture this: clear, warm water bathing spectacular coral reefs , clouds of fish, circling sharks, and 17 scientists intent on studying the pristine tropical marine ecosystems of the Southern Line...
Coral reefs are some of the most endangered ecosystems on the planet that are home to beautiful wildlife and provide food to many people living on the coast. So how do you protect the reefs without...
Scientists on the tiny island of Moorea, in the Pacific, are gathering one of every life form large enough to pick up with tweezers. They're on a quest to build a detailed catalog of the entire...
On Moorea, an island in French Polynesia, researchers are striving to complete a biocode—a DNA catalog of every life form big enough to pick up with tweezers.
Cooks Bay in Moorea is one of the places that researchers are scouring in their quest to collect one of every life form big enough to pick up with tweezers. In the background is Mt. Rotui—the...
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...
A school of yellowfin surgeonfish, Acanthurus xanthopterus , feed near dusk off Canton Island in the Phoenix Islands, one of the world's largest marine protected areas. Think this photo should be...
Did you know that 80 percent of the volcanic eruptions on Earth take place underwater? These underwater eruptions occur regularly, forming new landmasses and providing a living environment for deep-...
This month, our friends at National Geographic are featuring Smithsonian's own bio-scavenger, Chris Meyer and his work in one of our favorite places: Moorea , French Polynesia. In a beautiful meld of...
Photographer David Liittschwager took a 12-inch metal frame to Moorea, French Polynesia, and four other disparate environments to see how much life he could find in one cubic foot. Read more about...
The long silver tool shown here is a piece of traditional Australian fishing gear called a “yabbie pump.” Researchers use the device to collect burrowing shrimp and other fast-moving animals from the...
Monk seals -- the only completely tropical species of seal in the world -- are in trouble. Centuries of human exploitation and habitat destruction have caused the remaining populations of...
The Tubbataha Reefs National Park site in the Philippines was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1993. The site is an example of a pristine coral reef with a spectacular 100 m (330 ft)...
The Papahānaumokuākea site in the United States was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2010. The site is a vast isolated cluster of small low-lying islands and atolls with its surrounding ocean...
The toothy goby or common ghost goby ( Pleurosicya mossambica ) lives among soft corals and sponges in the Indo-Pacific ocean. The relationship it has with its host is commensal , which means the...
Subscribe to Pacific islands