Census of Marine Life

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The Census of Marine Life was a ten-year effort by scientists from around the world to answer the age-old question, “What lives in the sea?” The international effort to asses the diversity, distribution, and...
This transparent cockatoo squid ( Leachia sp.), also known as a glass squid,...
Now that the Census of Marine Life is over, we’re checking in with some of the...
In a decade long project, which ended in October 2010, scientists with the...

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This brilliant red octopus ( Benthoctopus sp. ) was photographed at more than 8,800 feet (about 2,700 meters) in Alaminos Canyon in the Gulf of Mexico. See more photos of wild creatures encountered during the Census of Marine...
This new species of deep-water sea cucumber ( Elpidia belyaevi ) was...
In the Coral Triangle, a biodiverse area between Indonesia and the...

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Did you know that over 17,000 species thrive in the deep sea where no light penetrates the ocean waves? Or that an old...
As 10 years of intensive research draw to a close, the Census of Marine Life has released the most comprehensive inventory of life in the ocean to date. This landmark collection of scientific papers...
Census of Marine Life researchers discovered this unusual transparent sea cucumber ( Enypniastes sp.) in the Gulf of Mexico at 2,750 meters depth. It creeps forward on its tentacles pretty slowly, at...
This beautiful spider conch ( Lambis chiragra ) was collected by Census of Marine Life scientists conducting research near China.
Omoo, a Great White Shark ( Carcharodon carcharias ), carries a satellite tag that sends information daily about her movements across the Pacific. Follow her migration real-time . More about the...
Sea stars ( Odontaster validus ) and sea urchins ( Sterechinus neumayeri ) spread over an algae-covered seafloor off the coast of Antarctica. These two species are often found living in association...
In Antarctica's Southern Ocean swims a beautiful polychaete (bristly worm) called Tomopteris carpenteri , which is adorned with alternating red and transparent bands. The largest species in its genus...
The Census of Marine Life - a ten-year effort by scientists from around the world to answer the age-old question, “What lives in the sea?” It was an international effort to asses the diversity,...
Many expeditions in the Arctic reveal new species, such as this jellyfi sh Bathykorus bouilloni , which, strangely, has only four tentacles! Dr. Kevin Raskoff from California State University,...
Scientists believe orange roughy ( Hoplostethus atlanticus ) live longer than 150 years! Here, Census of Marine Life researchers used an underwater camera to photograph this group of orange roughy...
This bright purple sea star is a new species found by the Census of Coral Reef Ecosystems , a project of the Census of Marine Life. This particular specimen was seen on the reefs of the French...
A fringe of short tentacles surrounds the flattened bell of this tiny, transparent jellyfish ( Halicreas minimum ), which can be found at depths up to 984 feet (300 meters). But it would be hard to...
Like its terrestrial namesake, the Venus fly-trap anemone ( Actinoscyphia sp.) sits quietly and waits for food to drift into its outstretched tentacles, which are lined with stinging harpoons called...
Now that the Census of Marine Life is over, we’re checking in with some of the researchers to hear about their favorite expedition, what they learned, and how the Census and its findings continue to...
Expedition data went to the Arctic Ocean Diversity database of the Census of Marine Life to establish a baseline that will help to document change in the poorly known Arctic Ocean. Scientist Kevin...
In the Coral Triangle, a biodiverse area between Indonesia and the Philippines, scientists discovered this swimming polychaete (bristly worm), which they have dubbed the "squidworm." Using a remotely...
Like this ctenophore ( Aulococtena acuminata ), many animals that live in the midwater zone are red—making them almost invisible in the dim blue light that filters down from the sea surface. This...
The ocean covers more than 70 percent of the Earth and is essential to all life. But forces of change, from overfishing to climate change, are affecting the ocean and humanity's relationship with it...
This rarely-seen smalleyed rabbitfish ( Hydrolagus affinis ), belonging to the order of Chimaera, was caught during a research trip to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge in 2004 sponsored by the Census of Marine...
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