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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...
Smithsonian Zoologist Dr. Clyde Roper (rear) and museum specialist Mike Sweeney examine the mantle of a dead giant squid. Everything we know about giant squid comes from studying specimens found...
The evolution of whales represents one of the great stories in macroevolution. It's a narrative that has mostly benefitted from an extraordinary series of fossils recovered from rocks around the...
Editor's note: Read Nick's first blog post about "toothed" baleen whales to see what their team is excavating on Vancouver Island. We departed from Port Renfrew on Tuesday morning on the Michelle...
Paeleobiologist Dr. Nicholas Pyenson, Curator of Fossil Marine Mammals for the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History (NMNH), set out with Jorge Velez-Juarbe, NMNH Research Student and Ph...
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...
On April 27, 1986, an estimated 50,000 barrels of medium-weight crude oil drained from a ruptured storage tank at a refinery in Panama, polluting the coast and the Smithsonian Tropical Research...
With 1,400 named species of ribbon worms inhabiting every ecosystem on earth, seeking one out should be an easy proposition. But I quickly learned that it can be quite daunting when you’re looking...
For over a decade, Smithsonian Arctic Archaeologists have been investigating an early European whaling site at Hare Harbor in Quebec, Canada . The site and the artifacts that have been recovered has...
Researchers in Moorea use a variety of tools to collect organisms. Some are simple, everyday items like buckets and brushes, and some are…a little stranger. Here, two researchers use a “yabbie pump”...
Sea stars are important members of marine ecosystems, especially in the tropics. We may think of tropical coral reefs as being home mainly to fish and corals, but in fact these habitats are home to a...
Dr. Valerie Paul is studying chemical defenses that may protect coral reefs from many species of herbivores that live on coral reefs. In this picture she is examining tropical seaweeds on...
Dennis Whigham , a senior botanist at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center , makes his quick pitch for why you should care about the wetland plant Phragmites australis . A European strain of...
Dr. Clyde Roper, Smithsonian zoologist and squid expert, tries to measure up to a giant squid specimen (Architeuthis) from New Zealand. The squid wins. More about the giant squid can be found in our...
A behind the scenes look at the NMNH ocean-related collections and their importance to research and discovery.
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...
Watch a Discovery video on Smithsonian squid expert Clyde Roper’s search for giant squid in Kaikoura Canyon off the coast of New Zealand. More about giant squid can be found in our Giant Squid...
Smithsonian zoologists inside the Curasub , a 5-person submersible. They're exploring the biodiversity of the deep reefs off Curaçao in the southern Caribbean. Read more and watch videos about the...
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