Ocean Life & Ecosystems

From the tiny to the titanic, from the familiar to the undiscovered, the ocean offers a stunning diversity of marine life and nearly every kind of habitat imaginable. Dive in and explore them here.

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Chrysaora melanaster is a jellyfish found in the Arctic.

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Jellyfish and Comb Jellies

Jellyfish and comb jellies are gelatinous animals that drift through the ocean's water column around the world. They are...
Photo of the head of a leafy seadragon

Devoted Dads: From Seahorses to Sea Spiders

Male leafy seadragons ( Phycodurus eques ) are among the ocean's more " devoted dads ." They carry the developing eggs for about a month, until they hatch. Credit: David Gray, FishWise Professional If...

Efforts to Protect the Critically Endangered Monk Seal

Monk seals -- the only completely tropical species of seal in the world -- are in trouble. Centuries of human exploitation and habitat destruction have caused the remaining populations of Mediterranean monk seals (...
An underwater photo of a school of jacks and a scuba diver

Ocean Views Award Winners, 2011

Thanks to a passionate group of fearless ocean photographers, you can stare-down a yellow-mouth moray eel, a sperm whale, and a harlequin shrimp. These are just three of the subjects in the 2011 Nature's...

The Oil Spill, Two Years Later

Mark Dodd, a wildlife biologist from Georgia's Department of Natural Resources, surveying oiled sargassum seaweed in the Gulf of Mexico after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Credit: Georgia Department of Natural Resources...
Giant Pacific Manta Ray, Roca Partida Sea Mount, Revillagigedos Islands, Mexico

Tagging and Tracking Animals Underwater

“Manta rays sometimes approach divers; an up-close encounter with such a huge, peaceful animal is unforgettable!” -- Nature's Best photographer, Deborah Smrekar. Equipment Used to Capture the Shot: Nikon D70; 12-24mm; 1/100 sec at...
Juvenile plane-head filefish

A World Adrift: Life in the Sargassum

The open ocean is surprisingly barren to the naked eye. Every now and again you will encounter a school of fish and their attendant predators, but most of the life that you find is...
An oceanic whitetip shark swims near a biologist in the Bahamas.

Spectacular Shark Pictures

Sharks are one of nature’s most beautiful—and misunderstood—creatures. When most people think of sharks, they think of unexpecting swimmers being attacked and eaten by a nightmarish creature. But what they don’t know is that...

Seal and Sea Lion Pictures

Many people love seals and sea lions, and it's easy to see why: they’re playful, adorable, and quite photogenic. But what is the difference between seals and their cousins the sea lions? Both have...

Ocean Fish Pictures

Everyone knows what a fish is: from a pet goldfish to a wild sunfish, fish are globally recognized and are an important global protein source. In this slideshow, we will look at some of...

Coral Reefs Changing Over Time

How do we know what coral reefs looked like hundreds of years ago? Often times, we are simply left wondering. Scientists can get an idea from naturalist recordings, but there are many unknowns and...

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