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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 distinctive form of a winghead shark ( Eusphyra blochii ) is revealed by an X-ray image. The Winghead Shark, one of about ten species of hammerhead sharks, has its eyes set at the tips of its...
Gyotaku is a traditional form of Japanese art that began as a way for fisherman to keep a record of the fish they caught. The fisherman would apply sumi ink to one side of a freshly caught fish, then...
The incredible variety of marine life—in numbers, body form, behavior, and more—is at the heart of Citizens of the Sea , an irresistible plunge into the surprising world beneath the waves. Author...
A cameraman navigates a smack of sea nettles ( Chrysaora fuscescens ) in Monterey Bay. A group of jellies is known as a "smack."
The larger fish in this picture are called sweetlips ( Plectorhinchus ) because of their big, fleshy lips. There are over thirty species of sweetlips, which tend to live on coral reefs in small...
“In 2010, I became the first photographic artist to ever photograph lava from inside the surf. I waited five years for the conditions to be perfect for this type of shot. First, the lava had to cross...
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...
A rainbow of tropical fish hovers over a coral head near the Pearl and Hermes Atoll, part of the Papahānaumokuākea World Heritage Site .
Recorded Feb. 15, 2011, this video from the Third Student Summit on the Ocean and Coasts includes a tribal song written and sung by Suquamish Tribal member Bearon Old Coyote; a welcome to the...
A still from, Voyage of the Plastiki , part of the 19th Annual Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital.
A fish made from pieces of plastic found on the beach swims above a bleached reef made of Styrofoam. While Angela Pozzi focuses her artwork on outreach about the harms of ocean plastic, she wants to...
Exciting news for the Ocean Portal blog! We’re happy as clams to be making our inaugural appearance in the Carnival of the Blue , a rotating monthly compilation of the "best of" ocean blogging. This...
Brian Skerry warily stares down his photography equipment on board the vessel Nai'a on an expedition to the Phoenix Islands. Read about the patience it takes as a traveling photographer and the work...
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 month, our friends at National Geographic are featuring Smithsonian's own bio-scavenger, Chris Meyer and his work in one of our favorite places: Moorea , French Polynesia. In a beautiful meld of...
Dampier is credited with helping to rescue Alexander Selkirk, the privateer who inspired the Robinson Crusoe story.
“Upon returning from the reef after a night dive, I swam toward a bright reflection and came eye-to-eye with this beautiful, curious squid," said Charles Viggers, a Nature's Best photographer. Squids...
What can students do to help the ocean? It turns out, a lot! These students from across the United States and Mexico are developing action plans on ocean and climate-related issues in their local...
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