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At Carrie Bow Cay in Belize , Dr. Candy Feller explains her research on the effect of excess nutrients on mangrove swamps. Feller runs the Animal-Plant Interaction Lab at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center...
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It blew in for two solid days: a flotilla of plastic forks, soda bottles,...
Blog entry MORE STORIES Blog entry MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
Since late April, the world has watched a devastating oil spill from a BP...

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Watch how a group of 9 staff members and 487 volunteers from Washed Ashore , a non-profit in Bandon, Oregon, made "Flash" the marlin―an enormous sculpture that weighs in at 850 pounds. The work of art is made only from pieces of...
For centuries, the Baltic Sea has provided European flounder ( Platichthys...
In the ocean, microscopic forms of algae, known as dinoflagellates , can "...

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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...
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;...
Dr. Chris Reddy, an environmental chemist from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution studies the long-term impacts of oil spills. Watch as he digs beneath the surface in Massachusetts’ Wild Harbor...
For more than two centuries, Boston Harbor has been a dumping ground. In 1773, colonists famously dumped shiploads of tea to protest taxes. But in recent decades, the harbor has received less tea and...
In the aftermath of the Gulf oil spill, what is the effect of oil on invertebrates like jellyfish, clams, crabs, sea stars, and plankton? The scope of the damage is more easily observed among birds...
We drove down a long dirt road on the northern side of Curaçao looking for a remote place to snorkel and sample. After a 30-minute bumpy ride, our team stepped out of the car into a breeze and the...
A group of students pick up trash along the coast of Guyana during the Ocean Conservancy's 2012 Coastal Cleanup, which it organizes in countries around the world every year. In 2013, nearly 650,000...
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...
Bonaire, a small Caribbean island just north of Venezuela, is routinely ranked as a top diving destination in the world. But there's something getting in the way of beautiful dives: plastic trash...
Watch how a group of 9 staff members and 487 volunteers from Washed Ashore , a non-profit in Bandon, Oregon, made "Flash" the marlin―an enormous sculpture that weighs in at 850 pounds. The work of...
The Deepwater Horizon oil spill , ocean acidification, and the decline of fish stocks are just three of the topics that renowned ocean scientist, Dr. Jeremy Jackson discusses in this talk, recorded...
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...
Marine debris damages habitat, entangles wildlife, helps transport invasive species, and harms marine animals that mistakenly ingest the trash thinking it is food. As part of the Smithsonian's Art's...
American Samoa National Marine Sanctuary comprises a fringing coral reef ecosystem nestled within an eroded volcanic crater on the island of Tutuila, American Samoa. The 163-acre sanctuary—the...
Bonny Schumaker, cofounder of the nonprofit On Wings of Care, flies over the Gulf of Mexico oil spill area every few weeks to survey for wildlife -- and on April 6, 2012, when this picture was taken...
Carl Pellegrin (left) of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and Tim Kimmel of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service prepare to net an oiled pelican in Barataria Bay, La., Saturday, June...
A Yellow spotted trevally struggles to free itself from a fisherman's discarded net. Discarded nets continue to fish long after they have been lost, devastating the local fish populations and choking...
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...
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