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The Ocean Blog

New England Aquarium researchers Dr. Moira Brown and Yan Guilbault conducting aerial surveys for North Atlantic right whales over the Roseway Basin, Canada. More about right whales can be found in...
Reef sharks rarely get any love. These sharks, comprising several species, loiter around coral reefs, snacking on small fish, squids and crustaceans. And while their size is nothing to smirk at—5-10...
This brightly colored squat lobster collected in Moorea is a common find among the coral heads. Although called lobsters, this group of crustaceans is more closely related to hermit crabs than to...
The rough patches of skin known as callosities occur in unique patterns on all North Atlantic right whales and help researchers identify and track individual whales. This whale is named Phoenix. More...
Researchers use Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structures (ARMS) like this one to study the diversity of coral reef organisms. They leave the structures underwater for about a year. Then they retrieve...
These watercolor sketches of Trapezia crabs were drawn by Frederick Bayer, a former Smithsonian coral biologist, in 1947. Trapezia crabs live on and within corals, feeding on their tissue and mucus,...
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...
In recent years, I have taken to watching flying fish along the Maine coast. Not the usual flying fish that skim over tropical seas, but fish dangling from the beaks of flying puffins. Puffins are...
If you are a bird watcher you have probably heard of the Christmas Bird Count. The first one occurred on Christmas Day in 1900 at a variety of locations throughout North America, and it has since...
Ocean Sampling Day 2014 will be the largest ocean sampling effort ever orchestrated on a single day. Over 170 sites globally will participate, with every participating site represented on the map...
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...
Now that the Census of Marine Life is over, we’re checking in with some of the researchers to hear about their favorite expedition, what they learned, and how the Census and its findings continue to...
A drawing of Phoenix from the Right Whale Catalog documents her callosity pattern and other identifying marks. More about whales can be found in our Tale of a whale featured story .
Hermit crabs, like this one collected in Moorea, usually protect their soft, vulnerable abdomens from predators by reusing empty snail shells. They are picky home owners and they will trade shells...
Ice divers use a quadrat to study the density of creatures living on the underside of Arctic ice floes. A quadrat is a standardized square used to take sample measurements that allow researchers to...
A student from the University of Cape Town in South Africa uses a field guide to help identify organisms during a shoreline survey at Cape Columbine.
Scientists use a multinet to collect Arctic zooplankton samples from different depth layers in the water column .
Oceanographer and executive director of Oceana Europe , Xavier Pastor, led the Baltic Sea expedition. The crew covered more than 7,000 nautical miles and completed more than 130 dives to collect...
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