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Articles on Marine ecosystems

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Some lakes in the Arctic are expanding and others are disappearing as permafrost thaws. This lake north of Inuvik, N.W.T., is expanding as the ice wedges (darker lines leading away from the lake) around this lake melt and the ground subsides. (Philip Marsh)

Collapsing permafrost is transforming Arctic lakes, ponds and streams

Hundreds of thousands of lakes, rivers and streams in the Arctic exist only because of the permafrost that lies beneath them. The warming Arctic threatens to change that.
A whale shark, the only fully protected shark species in Indonesia, swims under a fishing net. Paul Cowell/shutterstock

Why it is important to regulate shark fisheries in Indonesia

Shark fisheries in Indonesia are an important economic resource in several areas. Hence, stronger regulations are needed to prevent declines in shark population.
A phytoplankton bloom stretching across the Barents Sea off the coast of mainland Europe’s most northern point. European Space Agency

Ocean ecosystems take two million years to recover after mass extinction – new research

Populations of plankton are in decline. If we push this critical foundation of the marine food chain to extinction, we could cripple ecosystems for millions of years.
Marine parks are good for fish - especially if they’re in the right areas. Epstock/Shutterstock

More fish, more fishing: why strategic marine park placement is a win-win

With strategic planning, the marine protected area network could be a third smaller, cost half as much, and still meet the international target of protecting 10% of every ecosystem.
Shark Bay was hit by a brutal marine heatwave in 2011. W. Bulach/Wikimedia Commons

Shark Bay: A World Heritage Site at catastrophic risk

Everyone knows the Great Barrier Reef is in peril. But a continent away, Western Australia's Shark Bay is also threatened by marine heatwaves that could alter this World Heritage ecosystem forever.
Nature’s bank vault. Julius Glampedakis

Seagrass, protector of shipwrecks and buried treasure

The sediments that accumulate beneath seagrass meadows can act as secure vaults for shipwrecks and other precious artefacts, by stopping water and oxygen from damaging the delicate timbers.

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