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Biodiversity

This category contains 21 posts
The speckled shell of a top snail is place on different sides of the shell for a full view.

The New Mollusk on the Block

Have you ever wondered about how marine animals travel to a new place, you know, when they can’t swim there? Phorcus sauciatus, a marine top snail, doesn’t swim around like a fish. As an adult, this snail’s only method of movement is by crawling around on a surface with its foot. So how does this […]

Missing the (Kelp) Forest for the Trees: An Overlooked Factor in Blue Carbon Storage

A recent study exposes an overlooked carbon sink in the form of kelp forests. According to scientists’ estimates, a kelp forest in Australia sequesters 3% of global carbon per year, and this has important implications for the rest of the global carbon budget. Ashley MickensI recently graduated with a degree in Environmental Earth Science and […]

Fisheries, Food and the Future

As we approach 2021, the idea of “the future” seems closer than ever before. In a recent article, Cabral and his team propose a futuristic network of marine protected areas to help meet the challenges of a rapidly changing world. Ashley MickensI recently graduated with a degree in Environmental Earth Science and Sustainability from Miami […]

No language bounds in the ocean

What happens when an animal is found outside of its native range? Does it take over? How does it get there? A recent study developed a multilingual invasive species screening kit to track where marine creatures travel in the ocean. Diana FontaineI am a PhD student in the Rynearson Lab studying Biological Oceanography at the […]

Around the world on a quest for diatoms

How do scientists explore the diversity of tiny cells in the vast ocean? Does diversity change in relation to environmental factors? This study used a series of models to explore diatom diversity around the world on one of the Tara Oceans expeditions. Read on to learn about the wonderful world of diatoms in the global […]

Ocean and night sky

How do you share an octillion? Ensuring equitable access to the ocean genome

There are 3 octillion species in the ocean. The staggering amount of genetic material these species contain could offer answers to some of society’s great challenges, holding keys to curing cancer or reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The problem? Countries with less access to the financial and technical investment needed to explore this material are left […]

Stop Clowning Around: Cyanide Fishing in the Indo-Pacific

What does cyanide have to do with the tropical reef fish sold as pets and showcased in aquariums? A recent paper by Madeira et al. explore how illegal cyanide fishing is devastating Indo-Pacific reef ecosystems. Ashley MickensI recently graduated with a degree in Environmental Earth Science and Sustainability from Miami University of Ohio, and I’m […]

Peace for Coral Reefs

As the world has learned over the past several months, a little solitude goes a long way towards a healthy life. What if coral reefs need time away from humans to be able to live their best lives? Coral reefs, often called the rainforests of the sea, are known to be marvelous colorful ecosystems that […]

Let Marine Microbes Be Thy Medicine

The deep sea is a treasure trove of disease-fighting compounds–and is even helping us in the fight against the novel coronavirus. Emily ChuaI am a Ph.D. candidate at Boston University where I am developing an underwater instrument to study the coastal ocean.  I have a multi-disciplinary background in physics and oceanography (and some engineering), and […]

The HyperDiver: A New (Hyper-) Intelligent Way to Map the Ocean

German researchers have developed a new system–based on sophisticated imaging technology and artificial intelligence–which promises to revolutionize how we map coral reefs. Emily ChuaI am a Ph.D. candidate at Boston University where I am developing an underwater instrument to study the coastal ocean.  I have a multi-disciplinary background in physics and oceanography (and some engineering), […]

A transforming ecosystem: Chukchi and Bering Sea

Article: Huntington, H.P., Danielson, S.L., Wiese, F.K. et al. Evidence suggests potential transformation of the Pacific Arctic ecosystem is underway. Nat. Clim. Chang. (2020). Even though we constantly hear about climate change, we still do not understand how exactly and to what extent it affects our ecosystems. That is because ecosystems do not respond in […]

Phytoplankton: Small cells with a big impact

Tiny organisms called phytoplankton fuel the base of the marine food web. Did you know that every other breath of oxygen you take comes from the ocean? Read on to learn more about measuring phytoplankton production rates… Diana FontaineI am a PhD student in the Rynearson Lab studying Biological Oceanography at the Graduate School of […]

Increasing Warming causes Ecosystem Change along the Northeastern Shelf

Are the tropics coming to the Northeast coast of the US? Freidland and his team seem to think so. A recent study shows how the Northeastern shelf region may experience tropicalization in the near future. Ashley MickensI recently graduated with a degree in Environmental Earth Science and Sustainability from Miami University of Ohio, and I’m […]

Hidden diversity in ships’ ballast tanks

Did you know that organisms can live in the ballast tanks of cargo ships? Ballast tanks are used by ships to maintain stability as they transverse across ocean basins. Unfortunately, ballast water is a major culprit of the introduction of invasive species worldwide. Read on to learn more about a recent study that uses genetic […]

The Sound of (Fish) Music

The ocean contains a symphony of sounds. A new study describes a novel method for capturing the chorus “sung” by fish. Emily ChuaI am a Ph.D. candidate at Boston University where I am developing an underwater instrument to study the coastal ocean.  I have a multi-disciplinary background in physics and oceanography (and some engineering), and […]

If the benthos could talk: the value of long-term biodiversity monitoring

The tiny critters that burrow, swim, and graze in the benthic (bottom) habitats of marine ecosystems are often monitored over long time periods so that researchers can measure changes in biodiversity over time. Read on to find out how researchers used long-term benthic data from Narragansett Bay to link human activities with changes in biodiversity. […]

Linking marine and human health in Hispaniola

Biodiversity is often associated with higher standards of human livelihood, but researchers have yet to draw a direct line between healthy marine ecosystems and humans. Read on to learn how national infrastructure can complicate the relationship between biodiversity and human health. Katherine BarrettKate received her Ph.D. in Aquatic Ecology from the University of Notre Dame […]

Benthic biology on a thermally boring deep-sea ridge

The deep ocean is vast and full of neat ocean dwellers, many of which scientists know little about. One way to investigate them is from images and videos captured during deep-sea exploration efforts using submersibles. A group of scientists did just that to quantify the benthic assemblages at different depths and a variety of substate […]

Marine Protected Areas need more than just a name

It is no secret that the Earth’s oceans are in trouble. Every day there is a new article on rising temperatures, ocean acidification, coral bleaching, and species extinction, to name just a few. Luckily, governments are taking notice and policies are being enacted to curb the loss of this delicate, and essential ecosystem. However, deciding […]

Protecting Our Fish and Birds by Protecting Their Wetland Homes

Wetlands are the link between land and water, and are some of the most productive ecosystems on Earth. They need our protection, for the commercial fisheries we depend upon, for the recreational opportunities they provide us, and for the benefit of the species that use them. Zoe GentesZoe has an M.S. in Oceanography and a […]

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  • by oceanbites 1 day ago
    Being on a research cruise is a unique experience with the open water, 12-hour working shifts, and close quarters, but there are some familiar practices too. Here Diana is filtering seawater to gather chlorophyll for analysis, the same process on
  • by oceanbites 1 month ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #oceanbites  we are featuring Hannah Collins  @hannahh_irene  Hannah works with marine suspension feeding bivalves and microplastics, investigating whether ingesting microplastics causes changes to the gut microbial community or gut tissues. She hopes to keep working
  • by oceanbites 1 month ago
    Leveling up - did you know that crabs have a larval phase? These are both porcelain crabs, but the one on the right is the earlier stage. It’s massive spine makes it both difficult to eat and quite conspicuous in
  • by oceanbites 2 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Cierra Braga. Cierra works ultraviolet c (UVC) to discover how this light can be used to combat biofouling, or the growth of living things, on the hulls of ships. Here, you
  • by oceanbites 2 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Elena Gadoutsis  @haysailor  These photos feature her “favorite marine research so far: From surveying tropical coral reefs, photographing dolphins and whales, and growing my own algae to expose it to different
  • by oceanbites 3 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on Oceanbites we are featuring Eliza Oldach. According to Ellie, “I study coastal communities, and try to understand the policies and decisions and interactions and adaptations that communities use to navigate an ever-changing world. Most of
  • by oceanbites 3 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Jiwoon Park with a little photographic help from Ryan Tabata at the University of Hawaii. When asked about her research, Jiwoon wrote “Just like we need vitamins and minerals to stay
  • by oceanbites 3 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  on  #Oceanbites  we are featuring  @riley_henning  According to Riley, ”I am interested in studying small things that make a big impact in the ocean. Right now for my master's research at the University of San Diego,
  • by oceanbites 3 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Gabby Stedman. Gabby is interested in interested in understanding how many species of small-bodied animals there are in the deep-sea and where they live so we can better protect them from
  • by oceanbites 4 months ago
    This week for  #WriterWednesday  at  #Oceanbites  we are featuring Shawn Wang! Shawn is “an oceanographer that studies ocean conditions of the past. I use everything from microfossils to complex computer models to understand how climate has changed in the past
  • by oceanbites 4 months ago
    Today we are highlighting some of our awesome new authors for  #WriterWednesday  Today we have Daniel Speer! He says, “I am driven to investigate the interface of biology, chemistry, and physics, asking questions about how organisms or biological systems respond
  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
    Here at Oceanbites we love long-term datasets. So much happens in the ocean that sometimes it can be hard to tell if a trend is a part of a natural cycle or actually an anomaly, but as we gather more
  • by oceanbites 5 months ago
    Have you ever seen a lobster molt? Because lobsters have exoskeletons, every time they grow they have to climb out of their old shell, leaving them soft and vulnerable for a few days until their new shell hardens. Young, small
  • by oceanbites 6 months ago
    A lot of zooplankton are translucent, making it much easier to hide from predators. This juvenile mantis shrimp was almost impossible to spot floating in the water, but under a dissecting scope it’s features really come into view. See the
  • by oceanbites 6 months ago
    This is a clump of Dead Man’s Fingers, scientific name Codium fragile. It’s native to the Pacific Ocean and is invasive where I found it on the east coast of the US. It’s a bit velvety, and the coolest thing
  • by oceanbites 7 months ago
    You’ve probably heard of jellyfish, but have you heard of salps? These gelatinous sea creatures band together to form long chains, but they can also fall apart and will wash up onshore like tiny gemstones that squish. Have you seen
  • by oceanbites 7 months ago
    Check out what’s happening on a cool summer research cruise! On the  #neslter  summer transect cruise, we deployed a tow sled called the In Situ Icthyoplankton Imaging System. This can take pictures of gelatinous zooplankton (like jellyfish) that would be
  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    Did you know horseshoe crabs have more than just two eyes? In these juveniles you can see another set in the middle of the shell. Check out our website to learn about some awesome horseshoe crab research.  #oceanbites   #plankton   #horseshoecrabs 
  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    Feeling a bit flattened by the week? So are these summer flounder larvae. Fun fact: flounder larvae start out with their eyes set like normal fish, but as they grow one of their eyes migrates to meet the other and
  • by oceanbites 8 months ago
    Have you seen a remote working setup like this? This is a photo from one of our Oceanbites team members Anne Hartwell. “A view from inside the control can of an underwater robot we used to explore the deep parts
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