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Coral reefs and associated fisheries are of vital social, cultural and economic importance. Noah Pomeroy

Measuring coral reef fishes by taking humans out of the picture

Scuba-diving scientists devise method for gauging the health of coral reefs – a vital ecosystem for keeping fisheries sustainable for people.
Cannonball Jellyfish in the Gulf of California. Yazmin Flores for GCMP

Boom or bust in a jelly bloom market

In a changing climate, ocean populations sometimes rise and fall in unpredictable waves. Scientists, managers and fishers must make economically and ecologically sound decisions based on long-term outlooks.
Monitoring fishing vessels could be a growth industry in the tiny Pacific island nations that govern the world’s largest tuna fishery. AAP Image/Xavier La Canna

The Pacific islands ‘tuna cartel’ is boosting jobs by watching fish

A tiny handful of Pacific island nations control more than 50% of the world's tuna fishery, and their efforts to monitor international fishing vessels are set to become a major source of jobs.
Trawling for fish? You might be setting yourself up for a paltry haul next time. Glenn Perrigo

Frequent trawling leads to skinnier fish

Trawling – dragging heavy gear over ocean bottoms in search of fish near the sea floor – is arguably one of the most destructive human practices. Removing fish from the sea for an ever-hungry, growing…
Phytoplankton are responsible for half the world’s productivity. Here, a phytoplankton bloom in the northern Pacific. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center/Flickr

Tiny marine plants face a mixed bag thanks to climate change

You may not have heard of them or given them much thought, but phytoplankton — the microscopic plants that grow throughout the world’s oceans — are the foundation of oceanic food webs. Although tiny, they…
Young Steller sea lions in Prince William Sound, Alaska. NMFS Permit 14336. Markus Horning

Autopsies from space: who killed the sea lions?

A decade ago, we set out to unravel deep ocean crime scenes we weren’t even sure existed. The crime? Endangered Steller sea lions were rapidly disappearing in parts of Alaska. Their numbers dropped by…
About 18% of the world’s seagrass stocks have disappeared over 20 years. Richard Unsworth

For the love of cod, let’s save our disappearing seagrass

Seagrass is one of the most important coastal habitats where young ocean-going fish such as Atlantic cod can grow and develop before setting out on the journey of life. But these critically important habitats…
Coral reef ecosystem off Palmyra Atoll part of newly expanded Marine National Monument. Jim Maragos/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Pacific Remote Islands protection not just a drop in the ocean

This fall, President Obama signed a proclamation that created the biggest marine reserve in the world. By extending the protective boundaries around Wake Island, Jarvis Island and Johnston Atoll from 50…
Apollo Bay in Victoria. Australia’s coastal towns are vulnerable to changes in the surrounding seas. ccdoh1/Flickr

Your coastal town’s climate score? There’s a website for that

Australia’s coastal towns, many built around fisheries and tourism, are particularly vulnerable to climate change. South east and south west Australia are marine hotspots — they are warming much faster…
We need to play our cards right if Australia’s marine environments are to keep us afloat. Saspotato/Flickr

Marine science: challenges for a growing ‘blue economy’

AUSTRALIA 2025: How will science address the challenges of the future? In collaboration with Australia’s chief scientist Ian Chubb, we’re asking how each science discipline will contribute to Australia…
We love our fish ‘n’ chips, but most Australians don’t think our fisheries are sustainable. Simon Collison/Flickr

Why don’t we believe Australia’s fisheries are sustainable?

Australians love seafood. We each consumed an average of 25 kilograms of seafood in 2010 – an amount that has increased significantly over the last 30 years. Worldwide, fish consumption now exceeds beef…
Skate, or “skate”? Andrew M Griffiths

Unchecked food fraud threatens vulnerable fish

The deliberate act of falsely representing, labelling or advertising food, known as “food fraud”, is not a recent phenomenon. The deceitful adulteration of food has a long history based on the promise…

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