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Articles on Marine biology

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Southerly species like the giant owl limpet, seen here, started appearing on northern California shores. Jerry Kirkhart/Flickr

Five years after largest marine heatwave on record hit northern California coast, many warm–water species have stuck around

The Blob, a long-lasting mass of warm water, sat off the Pacific coast of North America for years, bringing new species to formerly cold waters. What allows some to survive while others fade away?
For centuries, sailors have told tales of milky seas – huge swaths of ocean glowing on dark nights, seen in blue in this false–color satellite image. Steven D. Miller/NOAA

Scientists are using new satellite tech to find glow-in-the-dark milky seas of maritime lore

When conditions are just right in some parts of the Indian Ocean, a type of bacteria will multiply and start to glow. Satellites are helping scientists study these milky seas for the first time.
David Clode/Unsplash

Curious kids: how do gills work?

Rather than breathing in and out through the mouth, fish use a one-way system, passing water in one direction over their gills.
Hurricane Harvey set up a rare natural experiment to study the effects of fishing. NOAA via Wikipedia

When hurricanes temporarily halt fishing, marine food webs recover quickly

Hurricane Harvey destroyed the fishing infrastructure of Aransas Bay and reduced fishing by 80% over the following year. This removed humans from the trophic cascade and whole food webs changed.
Manganese nodules on the Atlantic Ocean floor off the southeastern United States, discovered in 2019 during the Deep Sea Ventures pilot test. National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration

A rush is on to mine the deep seabed, with effects on ocean life that aren’t well understood

Companies are eager to mine the deep ocean for valuable mineral deposits. But scientists are concerned about impacts on sea life, including creatures that haven’t even been discovered yet.
Ocean carbon storage is driven by phytoplankton blooms, like the turquoise swirls visible here in the North Sea and waters off Denmark. NASA

Tiny plankton drive processes in the ocean that capture twice as much carbon as scientists thought

Microscopic ocean phytoplankton feed a “biological pump” that carries carbon from the surface to deep waters. Scientists have found that this process stores much more carbon than previously thought.
Researchers use Atlantic mackerel for bait on long-lining fishing sampling expeditions in the Gulf of Mexico.. C-IMAGE Consortium

Scientists have found oil from the Deepwater Horizon blowout in fishes’ livers and on the deep ocean floor

The Deepwater Horizon oil disaster catalyzed a decade of research on oil contamination in the Gulf of Mexico, from surface waters to the seabed, with surprising findings.

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