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By Caty Fairclough In centuries past, the ocean was thought to be full of krakens, sea serpents, sea monsters and other fantastic creatures. They helped to bring the mysterious ocean into the more familiar...
Dr. Stefan Huggenberger from the University of Cologne explains sound...
At the ends of the Earth, life thrives despite extreme conditions. In the...
In the episode of One Species at a Time , writer Karen Romano Young takes an...

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A 2010 study of IUCN's Red List of Threatened Species found that one-fifth of the world's vertebrates (animals with backbones) are threatened with extinction, including this Hawaiian monk seal. The Hawaiian monk seal ( Monachus...
The ocean sustains land animals besides humans. Here, a fox looks for a meal...
When a whale dies, the story has just begun. The massive carcass sinks to...

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The International Union for the Conservation of Nature ( IUCN ) maintains the Red List of Threatened Species , an inventory...
Phoenix, the North Atlantic right whale whose replica hangs from the ceiling of the Sant Ocean Hall at the National Museum of Natural History, was sighted with a calf off of Amelia Island in Florida...
Beluga whales are naturally vocal animals. They are often called “ canaries of the sea ” thanks to their wide repertoire of sounds such as whistles, squeals, moos, chirps, and clicks. Some...
A model marker applies paint to the life-size, meticulously detailed model of the North Atlantic right whale Phoenix which today is on exhibit in the Smithsonian’s Sant Ocean Hall in the National...
Graceful spinner dolphins ( Stenella longirostris ) swim through the dazzling blue waters of the Papahānaumokuākea National Monument, northwest of the main Hawaiian archipelago. Papahānaumokuākea was...
Whale baleen, the stiff bristly mouthparts that sieve small prey from the water, was strong yet flexible, and was used to provide structure in many human products, including umbrellas, corsets, and...
There were fewer than 450 North Atlantic right whales in 2006. Yet it has been illegal to hunt them since 1935. Why haven’t populations increased? Traits that made right whales easy to hunt make them...
Since 1987, researchers have been tracking Phoenix, one of the last North Atlantic right whales living today. It's estimated that there are fewer than 500 of these whales alive today. Read her story...
The fringed baleen plates are easy to observe as this North Atlantic right whale skims the water’s surface while it feeds. Many baleen whales suck in as much water was possible, and then push it out...
Editor's note: Read Nick's first blog post about "toothed" baleen whales to see what their team is excavating on Vancouver Island. We departed from Port Renfrew on Tuesday morning on the Michelle...
A female bottlenose dolphin ( Tursiops sp. ) carries a sponge, which it uses as a tool to dig up prey from the seafloor. The only dolphins known to use sponges as tools this way are the female...
An early scale model of North Atlantic right whale Phoenix indicates the location of scars on her tail from entanglements with fishing gear. More about the right whale can be found in our Tale of a...
California is known for it’s lovely beaches, good food, and sloping hills. But take a dive into the colder waters, and discover a new type of wonder: the California kelp forest. The kelp forests are...
North Atlantic right whales and ocean-going vessels often cross paths. Researchers have worked to show the interactions between whales and ships in order to protect the whales from collision. More...
These southern elephant seals ( Mirounga leonina ) may look like beach bums, but when they are in the water hunting, they are anything but. Satellite tracking by tagging the animals has found that,...
The elegant Antarctic minke whale feeds on krill (tiny crustaceans) during the winter. Groups of minke whales often are found on the edges of pack ice feasting so that they can grow thick layers of...
The Baird's beaked whale is a species of toothed whale. Most toothed whales (which also include dolphins, killer whales and porpoises) live in social groups called pods. Read more about toothed...
This illustration shows whalers of the early 1800s with their highly profitable catch.
Polar bear siblings in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area near Hudson Bay spar playfully during migration.
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