Today's Catch

Aug 16, 2012

Enric Sala / National Geographic

Enric Sala has spent much of his career looking for the ocean's "time machines" -- areas rich in biodiversity and largely unaffected by humans. In this recorded webcast , Sala, a National Geographic Ocean Fellow, takes the audience to the ocean's last wild places and tells us what scientists are trying to learn from them. This picture, taken by Sala, shows a congregation of blacktip reef sharks...Read more
Aug 14, 2012


Large numbers of grey reef sharks ( Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos ) were observed at Jarvis Island, an uninhabited Pacific island, during the 2010 Pacific RAMP expedition of the NOAA Ship Hi'ialakai . But most reefs don't have so many sharks. Read about it in the blog post " Reef Sharks Repelled by People ."Read more
Aug 13, 2012

© Robert Purdy/Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

An array of teeth from the sand tiger shark Carcharias taurus . The Smithsonian has the largest collection of shark teeth in the world, with more than 90,000 fossil shark teeth. More about sharks and great whites can be found in our Great White Shark featured story .Read more
Aug 6, 2012

Dr. Julian Finn, Museum Victoria

Deep-sea species like this dragonfish ( Bathophilus indicus ) live in cold, dark waters and may go weeks or months between meals. When food is found, the fish uses its impressive teeth—including some on its tongue—to get a tight grip on its prey.Read more
Aug 2, 2012

© 2004 Smithsonian Institution

The longsnout seahorse ( Hippocampus reidi ) can be found near seagrasses, corals, sargassum and mangroves . These seahorses usually are between three to seven inches tall and could be threatened habitat destruction, bycatch and the collection and trading of the species.Read more
Jul 30, 2012

Joseph Poupin, Institut de Recherche de l'Ecole Naval

Male fiddler crabs, like this one collected on Moorea, wave their enlarged claw as way of signaling to other crabs, especially during mating season. Learn more about the Island of Moorea in the Pacific Ocean, including its biodiversity and the scientific effort to catalog all the life found on its land and in its waters.Read more
Jul 27, 2012

R. Hopcroft, UAF, Hidden Ocean 2005, NOAA

Found in Arctic waters, this rare deep-water species of larvacean , Oikopleura gorskyi , eats by filtering particles from the seawater it drifts through. Larvaceans build 'houses' around themselves made of protein that helps them filter the water even better. And when the filters in its house get clogged, the plankter sheds its house and builds a new one. The larvacean in this picture, however,...Read more
Jul 20, 2012
Dr. Clyde Roper discusses the fascinating anatomy of the giant squid ( Architeuthis dux) in this excerpt of "Eyeball to Eyeball," an episode of Errol Morris' First Person television series. Watch Architeuthis and Eyeball to Eyeball , other excerpts from the series, to learn more about the giant squid , and read Dr. Roper's blog post about his past expeditions to find the large cephalopod.Read more
Jul 18, 2012
Credit:© Morne Hardenberg
It's hard to imagine a 2000-pound animal launching itself out of the water while hunting, but the great white shark does just that. This spectacular behavior is called breaching, and great white sharks breach in order to catch fast-moving prey like seals. Swimming fast at the surface, sharks can reach 40 miles per hour and fly 10 feet into the air; however, breaching is relatively rare because...Read more
Jul 16, 2012

Joan Lederman

Massachusetts ceramics artist Joan Lederman glazes her work —including this bowl—with deep sea sediments. Some contain tiny single-celled organisms called foraminifera. Lederman has noticed that sediments with foraminifera often make branching patterns—like the ones you see on this bowl. “I hear and feel forams roll off the sediment-filled brush,” says Lederman. More about deep ocean exploration...Read more