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The Ocean Blog

Harp seals are protected in the United States by the Marine Mammal Protection Act . Although they are not considered endangered, as sea ice melting earlier and earlier each year, available harp seal...
“I arrived at this beach about a half an hour before sunset. I shot a good number of beach and sunset pictures on this trip and on previous trips, so I was looking for something different. I noticed...
Marine World Heritage is a prestigious list of 43 marine ecosystems and biodiversity treasures from across the globe, including countries such as Australia, Iceland, Russia, South Africa, the...
A gentoo penguin ( Pygoscelis papua ) mother stands with her chick in Antarctica. When walking on land, gentoo penguins waddle with their long tails dragging behind them; but in the water, they are...
“In 2010, I became the first photographic artist to ever photograph lava from inside the surf. I waited five years for the conditions to be perfect for this type of shot. First, the lava had to cross...
Brian Skerry warily stares down his photography equipment on board the vessel Nai'a on an expedition to the Phoenix Islands. Read about the patience it takes as a traveling photographer and the work...
The veined octopus ( Amphioctopus marginatus ), also known as the coconut octopus, has a skill beyond other cephalopods: it hides under animal and coconut shells, dragging them along the seafloor for...
“In late November, land-locked polar bears gather along the Hudson Bay to await the formation of Arctic ice so they can return to their seal-hunting grounds for the winter.” -- Nature's Best...
Scientists in the Division of Fishes at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History use X-ray imaging to study the complex bone structure and diversity of fish. This image gallery showcases...
“Leatherback turtles are critically endangered, and this young hatchling is a symbol of hope for their future.” -- Nature's Best photographer, Jason Bradley . See more beautiful ocean photos in our...
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To document fragile organisms found in the Arctic , scientist Kevin Raskoff builds special aquaria on the ship to photograph of live critters that have been captured.
In the X-ray image of this Viper Moray Eel ( Enchelynassa canina ), note the second set of jaws in the “throat”; these are the gill arches, which are present in all fish. Gill arches support the...
The ocean is so big that it can be easy to forget the microscopic beauty of the organisms that live within. Some of this beauty is documented by the Nikon Small World photomicrography competition ,...
Kilauea Volcano, Kalapana, Hawaii, USA “In the upper left of this image I can visualize the profile of Pele, the fire goddess of Hawaiian folklore, as if she is whispering to the sea.” -- Nature's...
“Tomales Bay is a narrow, protected waterway along the San Andreas fault. In years past, it was known for its thriving fishing industry. This boat is a relic from better times for local fishermen,...
“A tern colony resides here for the better part of the summer, raising their young and preparing for their migration south. In August, the birds often become very busy at dusk as they retrieve fish...
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