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Many animals depend on their eyes to navigate, find food, locate mates, and for other important activities. But marine mammals often rely on sound—sometimes far more than sight—for such critical daily tasks. Increasingly though,...
At Carrie Bow Cay in Belize , Dr. Candy Feller explains her research on the...
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It blew in for two solid days: a flotilla of plastic forks, soda bottles,...
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Since late April, the world has watched a devastating oil spill from a BP...

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In this view of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill from above in June 2010, you can see bright orange oil floating on the ocean's surface on the left and, on the right, a thin layer of oil reflects the colors of the rainbow. However...
Sea turtles face many obstacles throughout their lives—net entanglement,...
In recent years, blooms of jellyfish, such as these moon jellies ( Aurita...

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The Gulf oil spill is recognized as the worst oil spill in U.S. history. Within days of the April 20, 2010 explosion and...
Health, Safety, and Environment (HSE) workers contracted by BP clean up oil on the beach in Port Fourchon, La. May 23, 2010. Hundreds of HSE contract workers cleaned up oil from the Deepwater Horizon...
In August 1994, Mandy Joye dove to the deep sea in a submersible for the first time. A newly-minted Ph.D., she had recently completed her graduate studies on marine microbes living in unusual...
Marine debris--or trash that has washed or been dumped into our ocean and coastal areas--is not only unsightly but can also pose a serious hazard for humans and marine life. On Bonaire, beach-goers...
Boats trying to control the fire on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig on April 21, 2010.
There is a huge amount of plastic trash floating in the ocean, which endangers wildlife that eats or gets tangled in it. Reducing the amount of plastic trash in the ocean doesn't seem that hard;...
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...
Part 6 of a 6-part series describing WHOI's efforts to understand the scope and impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. "Assessing the Impacts" describes a range of work by...
It is a well-known fact that for animals living in the deep sea, food can be scarce. The food that is around usually rains down from above as dead animals and organic particles from plankton living...
More than ever, the fate of the ocean is in our hands. To be good stewards and leave a thriving ocean for future generations, we need to make changes big and small wherever we are. To make a positive...
This photograph from a scanning electron micrograph shows the plastisphere up close. Here you can see a microbial reef forming on a tiny piece of plastic found in the open ocean. A variety of single-...
When a critically endangered North Atlantic right whale becomes entangled in fishing gear, members of a response team from the Atlantic Large Whale Disentanglement Network spring into action. In the...
More than 40 years after the 1969 oil spill in Massachusetts’ Wild Harbor salt marsh, environmental chemist Dr. Chris Reddy from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution finds that the oil is still...
By Emily Frost Throw a message in a bottle into the vast ocean and where does it go? The answer to this question is not just a romantic curiosity. Thinking about where a small floating item might end...
You are not alone if you don’t know what forams (short for foraminifera) are, so let’s start with the basics. Simply put, forams are single-celled organisms related to the familiar amoeba that...
With the nuclear and humanitarian crisis in Japan, major political changes in North Africa and the Middle East, and heated budget battles here in the United States, you'd be forgiven for not...
The Exxon Valdez oil spill occurred on March 24, 1989 when an oil tanker grounded on a reef in Alaska’s Prince William Sound. It spilled almost 11 million gallons of crude oil, which reached 1,300...
In marshlands along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, it's easy to hear the sharp, buzzing calls of seaside sparrows ( Ammodramus maritimus )—even if they can be hard to spot. These five-inch, brown...
Part 3 of a 6-part series describing Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution's efforts to understand the scope and impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. "Sampling the Source"...
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