Today's Catch

Jun 28, 2011
A polar bear and her cub on the ice

Alan D. Wilson,

The Encyclopedia of Life and Atlantic Public Media bring us another installment of the podcast, One Species at a Time . In this podcast, host Ari Daniel Shapiro relates two close calls with polar bears. Listen as Heather Cray recalls how, dumped by a storm on a small Arctic island, she got an unexpected wake-up call. And when researcher Steve Amstrup accidentally crashed through the roof of a...Read more
Jun 21, 2011

Quincy Dein, Maui, Hawaii, USA

“While the shore-break at Makena Beach is notoriously dangerous and powerful, it also makes for some amazing images. On this particular morning I convinced my brother, Forrest, to ride a couple of waves on his boogie board just as the sun came over the crest of Haleakala. Shooting barreling shore-break can be dangerous for both a photographer and his camera, but as this particular wave came in...Read more
Jun 8, 2011
It was a typical summer day in the Sant Ocean Hall at the National Museum of Natural History. Visitors were examining the giant squid and marveling at the life-size replica of Phoenix, the right whale . The only thing odd was the high number of blue-clad people milling about. And then surfing-music filled the gallery. The blue crowd began to jam out. A Roundnose Grenadier and orange roughy --...Read more
Jun 3, 2011
June 8th is World Ocean Day- a great time to celebrate all that the ocean does for us and focus on keeping it healthy for future generations. Visit the Ocean Portal's Find Your Blue page to start learning today about how your personal actions affect the ocean and how you can make make small changes to your daily routine to help protect it. You can also learn more by watching footage of sharks...Read more
May 23, 2011

Flickr user ianredan

Adaptation is the key word if you are looking to survive in a tide pool, a space that some scientists describe as the most competitive real estate in the ocean. Tide pools are exposed to the water's ebb and flow, and plants and animals must adapt to survive wave turbulence, desiccation stress, predation, and competition for space and food. Not enough real estate on the rocks? Barnacles , sponges...Read more
May 11, 2011
This short video takes you two hundred miles off the coast of Oregon and some 6,600 feet below the water's surface to observe the Dumbo octopus ( Grimpoteuthis bathynectes ). Little is known about this deep-sea creature, but if this footage doesn't inspire a whole cadre of budding teuthologists, we don't know what will.Read more
May 10, 2011

Jeffrey T. Williams/Smithsonian Institution

Some fish you can fry up in the pan, no questions asked. Others require a bit of research. Case in point: the puffer fish. Commonly known as fugu, some species contain toxins more deadly than cyanide. The Indo-Pacific puffer Lagocephalus cf. suezensis (pictured here) is among the more toxic. Ensuring that only the safe puffers make it to market is of concern to the U.S. Food and Drug...Read more
May 9, 2011

Smithsonian Institution

"The ocean is essential to all" is one of the Ocean Literacy Principles , and it seems to look more arresting when written in Korean calligraphy than it does in any computer font. Artist Myoung-Won Kwon shared his talents during a visit to the National Museum of Natural History. Kwon was one of many artists who participated in a May 2011 Smithsonian event celebrating Asian Pacific American...Read more
May 5, 2011

Mary Parrish

Rachel Caauwe was one of a dozen artists who spent a recent Saturday sketching specimens from the Smithsonian's musky-scented marine mammal collection . Here she's shown drawing the remains of a harbor seal ( Phoca vitulina ). The workshop, organized by the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators , focused on larger whales. "I was quite overwhelmed by the scale of some of the specimens," said...Read more
Apr 26, 2011
The Encyclopedia of Life and Atlantic Public Media bring us a new installment of the podcast, One Species at a Time . Vacuumed up from its habitat a mile down in the ocean, the red paper lantern jelly may not look like much. Mostly water, it’s so fragile that once brought to the surface it’s reduced to a tattered blob in a jar. But this unassuming jellyfish has lessons for scientists. It’s...Read more