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Brian Skerry can be called many things – explorer, journalist, conservation advocate – but he is first and foremost a photographer. His journeys to capture amazing underwater photographs have taken him across the world’s...
The “Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef,” a unique exhibition and thought-provoking...
Wherever you live—and whatever your age or walk of life—there is something you...
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The ocean is so big that it can be easy to forget the microscopic beauty of the...

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“As we motored around Paulet Island in a Zodiac boat, these two curious penguins waddled across an iceberg to get a closer look at us.” -- Nature's Best photographer, Phillip Colla . See more beautiful ocean photos in our...
Harp seals are protected in the United States by the Marine Mammal...
The larger fish in this picture are called sweetlips ( Plectorhinchus )...

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With striking imagery from her book Smithsonian Ocean: Our Water, Our World, Deborah Cramer makes a powerful case for a...

The Ocean Blog

The veined octopus ( Amphioctopus marginatus ), also known as the coconut octopus, has a skill beyond other cephalopods: it hides under animal and coconut shells, dragging them along the seafloor for...
A still from Where the Whales Sing , part of the 19th Annual Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital.
Local yarn and craft shops were highly involved in creating the Smithsonian Community Reef —the local community’s accompaniment to the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef exhibit. The HCCR, created by...
“ This moray eel was resting among some hard coral and was mesmerized by my dive lights, making it a very cooperative subject. The moray eel rhythmically opens and closes its mouth to move water...
Rachel Caauwe was one of a dozen artists who spent a recent Saturday sketching specimens from the Smithsonian's musky-scented marine mammal collection . Here she's shown drawing the remains of a...
At night this lemon shark ( Negaprion brevirostris ) lurks at the surface, but often during the day they will lie on the ocean bottom. This behavior had been thought to save them energy, but in...
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,...
A gentoo penguin ( Pygoscelis papua ) mother stands with her chick in Antarctica. When walking on land, gentoo penguins waddle with their long tails dragging behind them; but in the water, they are...
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...
“Let’s talk about the Earth, really talk about survival. We can talk about the Poles where the cold is unrivaled.” Rappers wrap their heads around climate change in this music video. More about...
Massachusetts ceramics artist Joan Lederman glazes her work —including this bowl—with deep sea sediments. Some contain tiny single-celled organisms called foraminifera. Lederman has noticed that...
Underwater photographer, Brian Skerry, prepares for an icy dive off the coast of Hokkaido, Japan. With all the specialized gear and the large amount of travel necessary to take photos underwater,...
Corals are just one of the many marine life forms that can be modeled in crochet. Jellyfish, like the one pictured here, starfish, sea snails, and kelp are some of the other organisms that...
The shortfin mako shark ( Isurus oxyrinchus) is found offshore in tropical and warm temperate waters of all oceans, but has been known to travel to cooler waters at times. It is very strong and the...
What does a bioluminescent creature that lives more than 2 miles below the surface of the ocean and a glow stick have in common? More than you think. Bioluminescence is the process by which living...
“For the past few years I have visited the island of Dominica to enjoy its beauty both above and below the surface. This photo was taken during a lucky encounter with a member of the ‘group of 7’ pod...
A volunteer sorts washed plastic collected from the beach into buckets by color and size. Washed Ashore uses all but around 5% of the plastic volunteers collect from the beaches in its sculptures...
Ocean , a dance choreographed by Fran Spector Atkins, combines interpretive dance with scientist interviews, photography, and ocean facts to spread a message of ocean conservation -- a "balanced...
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