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Some of the most otherworldly animals—like those straight from a science fiction story—can be seen in the open ocean at night. By drifting in the blackwater in a scuba suit just under the surface,...
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The Mars rover Curiosity is sending images back home : glimpses of another...
About DROP DROP is a multidisciplinary Smithsonian project exploring the...
Blog entry MORE STORIES Blog entry MORE AUDIO / VIDEO
Ever since fourth grade I’ve wanted to explore the creatures and landscapes of...

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Nancy Knowlton, Smithsonian's Sant Chair for Marine Science, puts up an Autonomous Reef Monitoring Structure (ARMS) during a dive in the Red Sea. These small underwater “condos” have been placed across the world’s oceans—from...
The first time biologist Mandy Joye dove to the deep sea in the Johnson-Sea-...
“It’s a little appreciated fact that most of the animals in our ocean make...

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The submersible Alvin carries scientists to the deep ocean, where they encounter amazing creatures and views of deep ocean...
As children, many people have dreamed of plunging beneath the ocean surface to explore the unknown world below. Dr. Robert Ballard is living his childhood dream. He is among a small number of people...
The ocean holds a lot of history. Warships from World War II have been found on the floor of the Atlantic Ocean through the use of sonar technology and are being explored before they give in to the...
The Johnson-Sea-Link submersible reaches the ocean’s surface with a specimen of Keratoisis bamboo coral inside its collection box. Find out how ocean scientists study deep-sea corals in our Deep-sea...
Hear how research unfolds at sea in a tiny Zodiac surrounded by creatures that measure longer than a city bus. Playing female whale calls into the water, researcher Susan Parks suddenly finds herself...
Now that the Census of Marine Life is over, we’re checking in with some of its researchers to hear about their favorite expeditions, what they learned, and how the Census and its findings continue to...
Dr. Clyde Roper, squid expert, explains how he developed a passionate interest in the giant squid ( Architeuthis dux) in this excerpt of "Eyeball to Eyeball," an episode of Errol Morris' First Person...
Scientists journey to the isolated island of Moorea on a quest to catalog every life form big enough to pick up with tweezers—from mountaintop to seafloor. Get up close and personal with researchers...
In the spring of 2011, a research crew from Oceana spent two months in the brackish Baltic Sea . The Baltic faces challenges from pollution, algae blooms, over fishing, and invasive species. Oceana...
Filmmaker and National Geographic Explorer James Cameron on March 25, 2012, became the first human to complete a solo submarine dive to Challenger Deep , an undersea valley in the Mariana Trench of...
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...
Doing scientific research on a ship isn't always easy. On top of having to live and sleep on a boat on the water, you have to fit all your scientific equipment onboard—and make sure it continues...
Jeff Chanton's students collect plankton in large nets called plankton tows during the May 2012 R/V Weatherbird II Cruise in the Gulf of Mexico.
Some of the most otherworldly animals—like those straight from a science fiction story—can be seen in the open ocean at night. By drifting in the blackwater in a scuba suit just under the surface,...
Smithsonian zoologists inside the Curasub , a 5-person submersible. They're exploring the biodiversity of the deep reefs off Curaçao in the southern Caribbean. Read more and watch videos about the...
The Baltic’s waters are so frigid that the sandy seabed was often frozen during Oceana's 2011 expedition. The divers’ underwater cameras had to be put on automatic settings to take photos, as their...
Deep-sea coral beds are true biodiversity hotspots. It’s urgent that we study these extreme environments because we know so little about them, because they are important communities for so many deep-...
Researchers with the Smithsonian's Deep Reef Observation Project (DROP) collected this sea toad, Chaunax pictus , off the coast of Honduras in 2011. The team is trying to collect sea toads from...
Nick Pyenson, curator of fossil marine mammals at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, holds an arm bone from a "toothed" mysticete from Vancouver Island. This is the second specimen...
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