Today's Catch

Aug 18, 2010

©2002 MBARI

Marine biologists from MBARI nicknamed this startlingly large jellyfish—which grows over one meter (three feet) in diameter—"big red." It would be hard to miss, except that it lives at depths of 650 to 1,500 meters (2,000 to 4,800 feet). Big red uses four to seven fleshy "feeding arms" instead of stinging tentacles to capture food and has been observed off the west coast of North America, Baja...Read more
Aug 10, 2010
a marine iguana, Amblyrhynchus cristatus

© Petr Baum

No iguana wants to be cooked alive on a hot rock and then served up as dinner for a Galapagos hawk. But it turns out the marine iguanas ( Amblyrhynchus cristatus ) have a strategy that warns them of the presence of hawks they can’t see. They learned to tune in to a kind of police scanner…the alarm calls of mockingbirds.Read more
Jul 29, 2010

© Oceana

Using a deep-diving ROV, the crew aboard Oceana’s research vessel Ranger were surprised to discover large colonies of deep-sea white coral in the Western Mediterranean Sea in July 2010. Most of the Mediterranean’s deep-sea coral reefs are already gone as a result of destructive fishing techniques such as bottom trawling.Read more
Jul 14, 2010
Mangroves abut blue ocean waters.

Eric Punkay/Marine Photobank

Follow researchers Candy Feller and Dennis Whigham from the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center as they scramble, climb, crawl, and creep through the tangled roots of a mangrove forest. In this episode of the Podcast of Life , learn what’s threatening these unique ecosystems where the ocean meets the land. Studying these flooded forests is a challenge, but pursuing science in this strange...Read more
Jul 9, 2010

Courtesy of Smithsonian Institution Libraries, Washington, D.C.

The arrows show the direction of ocean currents recorded by William Dampier while crossing “La Grande Mer du Sud”—the Pacific Ocean. The map appeared in Dampier’s second book, Voyages and Descriptions, published in early 1699.Read more
Jul 8, 2010
school of bluefin tuna


What is it like to be eyeball to eyeball with a fish the size of a Volkswagen? In this episode of the Podcast of Life , learn how a tuna fisherman and a biologist are teaming up to tag bluefin tuna , and how those tags are revealing surprises that might help save tuna from their own popularity in sushi restaurants.Read more
Jun 14, 2010
Tube worms called riftia occupy a deep-sea vent

©2003 MBARI

In this episode of the Podcast of Life , host Ari Daniel Shapiro dives deep to discover a white worm as tall as your refrigerator that breathes through bright red feathery "lips." This isn’t a creature from outer space. Meet Riftia, a tube worm that lives in deep-sea vents, and learn the surprising lessons this denizen of the abyss is teaching scientists about life on Earth.Read more
Jun 11, 2010
Watch as Dr. Dallas Alston and a team of researchers study the effects of aquaculture at a fish farm near Puerto Rico. With careful planning and good daily practices, aquaculture can be part of a sustainable seafood strategy that helps feed people while protecting the environment. More about sustainable seafood can be found in our Sustainable Seafood featured story .Read more
Jun 9, 2010
The Deepwater Horizon disaster has imperiled the ecosystem along the U.S. Gulf Coast. Most oil spills have occurred at the ocean surface. This one, originating at the ocean floor and rising up through the water column, has the potential to affect the marine environment at every level. More about the Gulf oil spill can be found in our Gulf Oil Spill featured story .Read more
Jun 8, 2010

Stephanie Valentin and D. J. Patterson

Ari Daniel Shapiro is joined for this episode of The Podcast of Life by science contributor Josh Kurz, who tells the story of dinoflagellates through "music from the bottom of the food chain." There are "billions of these microscopic creatures in every bucket of the salty sea," Kurz reveals. Learn which dinoflagellate has a special glow, and which one is responsible for killing more people every...Read more