Today's Catch

Salps are tube-shaped, soft, transparent animals that swim through the ocean, straining out plant food as they go.

Antarctic Salps

Climate and sea changes in the Southern Ocean create conditions that favor the growth of salps over krill , the latter of which are a vital food source for seals, whales, and penguins. Salps are filter-feeding tunicates that float through the water...
A close-up photo of Killer Algae, Caulerpa taxifolia, a seaweed that has proven to be a successful invasive species.

Killer Algae (Caulerpa taxifolia)

A strain of this green seaweed, native to the Indian and Pacific Oceans, escaped public and private aquariums in California, Japan, Australia, and Monaco. It has spread widely in the Mediterranean, replacing native plants (such as seagrasses ) and...

Jellyfish predate dinosaurs. How have they survived so long?

Gelatinous drifters that move in a mesmerizing way, jellyfish are beautiful creatures. But take a closer look and you'll see there's more to these creatures than a pretty picture. Some shoot a deadly venom, while others produce a luminescent glow...
A photo of a sea walnut, a ctenophore.

Sea Walnut (Mnemiopsis leidyi)

This ctenophore (a stingless jellyfish-like animal) is native to the east coast of North and South America. In 1982, it was discovered in the Black Sea, where it was transported by ballast water . It subsequently spread to the Caspian Sea. In both...

Shipwrecked!

NOAA Ocean Today explores shipwrecks! Ocean Exploration is all about new discoveries, and shipwrecks are one of the most fascinating expeditions of all. The unsinkable Titanic, the civil war ironclad USS Monitor, and literally millions of unknown or...
Small orange brittlestars on the coast of the Atlantic.

An Invasive Brittlestar

These brittlestars ( Ophiothela mirabilis ) are not where they belong. These animals, usually found in the Pacific Ocean, were first spotted in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Brazil in 2000. And since then, they've been seen crawling up and...

AUV Sentry

AUV Sentry is an autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) that was used in the Gulf of Mexico directly after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010. Researchers rushed to get to the Gulf as quickly as possible to learn what was happening to the deep...
Veined Octopus at Anilao Batangas Pier, Philippines

Veined Octopus at Anilao Batangas Pier, Philippines

The veined octopus ( Amphioctopus marginatus ), also known as the coconut octopus, has a skill beyond other cephalopods: it hides under animal and coconut shells, dragging them along the seafloor for protection. This is one of the few examples—if...
A zoomed-in image of the crown-of-thorns sea star.

Acanthaster planci

Scientists have been studying why populations of crown-of-thorns sea stars ( Acanthaster planci ) have mushroomed in recent decades. Coral reefs can suffer when the sea star's numbers explode because the echinoderm has a healthy appetite and few...

Discover Deep-sea Corals in Maine

Scientists with NOAA Fisheries discovered deep-sea coral gardens in relatively shallow waters of the Gulf of Maine in 2014. As their name suggests, deep-sea corals live in cold oceanic waters. Unlike shallow-water corals, however, deep-sea corals...

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