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The Ocean Blog

Bikini Atoll, formed over millions of years around an island in the Pacific Ocean about halfway between Papua New Guinea and Hawaii, has been subjected to horrific human-caused disturbances. Between...
When we think "Africa," we think of the "Big Five"—lions, elephants, leopards, buffalo and rhinos—that crisscross the African Savannah. Few would imagine that there could be more natural beauty on...
The Area de Conservación Guanacaste site in Costa Rica was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1999. The site has the most intact inshore Pacific marine ecosystem between the Panama Canal Zone...
Check out the eyes on these Hawaiian squirrelfish ( Sargocentron xantherythrum )! Because squirrelfish are almost entirely nocturnal, they need big eyes to absorb as much moonlight and starlight as...
The Coiba National Park and its Special Zone of Marine Protection site in Panama was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2005. The site, protected from the cold winds and effects of El Nino,...
When snorkeling in the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA) in West Maui, I keep an eye out for certain kinds of fish. Not the brightest or the biggest, but those herbivores such as...
Last week, the United Nations’ World Heritage Convention went blue. Two of the largest and healthiest marine protected areas on our planet—the Phoenix Islands Protected Area in Kiribati and...
The Great Barrier Reef site in Australia was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1981. The site is the world’s most extensive stretch of coral reef with probably the richest animal diversity...
The Aldabra Atoll site in the Seychelles was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1982. The site is comprised of a coral reef surrounding four large coral islands, which enclose a shallow lagoon...
The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary encompasses several state parks and wildlife refuges. Learn more about National M arine Sanctuaries and how they can help protect and conserve ocean life.
A few years ago, I was in New Zealand photographing a story about the value of marine reserves (a type of marine protected area ). My last location was a place called the Poor Knights Islands , a...
The Islands and Protected Areas of the Gulf of California site in Mexico was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2005. The site is important for its diversity of oceanographic processes,...
When most people think of iconic American landscapes, we think of places on land. Yellowstone, the Great Smoky Mountains, the Grand Canyon—these national parks are household names. But many Americans...
What is coral bleaching? These white corals in the Gulf of Mexico’s Flower Garden Bank National Marine Sanctuary are bleached due to an increase in water temperatures, which causes corals to lose the...
While the Ross Sea is perhaps the most pristine place left in the world’s ocean, the human footprint is fast changing this last place. Even as the effects of climate change are redefining the very...
This Marine National Monument protects a chain of atolls and reefs 1,931-kilometers (1,200-miles) long. The Hawaiian name for this chain is “Papahanaumokuakea,” which joins the Hawaiian words for...
On many of the dives, Oceana's 2011 Baltic Sea expedition team saw little wildlife in the oxygen-depleted areas. But near some marine protected areas, the crew saw an array of marine life, including...
The Puerto-Princesa Subterranean River National Park site in the Philippines was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1999. The site's topography varies from flat plains to rolling hinterlands and...
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