SeaHarmony welcomes all ocean scientists, ocean educators, resource managers, artists, and ocean related organizations and community groups.
Microbes might be too small to see, but they can certainly make a big impact! After the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, microbes cleaned up 120,000 metric tons of the methane in the oil! However, they do not eat some of the more toxic components of the oil, which still remain in the environment. Have you thanked a microbe today?
Why are people so worried about plastic pollution in the ocean? Plastics break into smaller plastic pieces, but never completely break down. The tiny plastic pieces get eaten by small fish and crustaceans, which then get eaten by bigger fish, albatrosses, whales, and sharks. These plastics can cause serious harm once ingested resulting in starvation, and internal injuries. Remember, plastics are forever.
You may have known that corals are living animals but did you know that they have a partnership with algae living inside of them? Algae known as zooxanthellae (zo-zan- thel-ay) live in the coral’s tissue. The coral gives the algae protection and nutrients while the algae provide food and oxygen to the coral in return. When two living organisms help each other out like this we call it a symbiotic relationship.
Hawaiʻians are well known for their strong ocean voyaging heritage. Archeologists have discovered that Egyptians were also adept seafarers. The Egyptians built massive ships capable of traveling over 1000 miles. Furthermore, these ships were built to be disassembled and reassembled, because the Egyptians had to break them down and carry them 100 miles across the desert to trade goods.
The air above the ocean is intricately connected to the ocean floor miles below. Carbon dioxide dissolves into the surface of the ocean from the atmosphere and phytoplankton use the carbon dioxide for photosynthesis. Other organisms at the surface eat the phytoplankton and when they die they sink down towards the sea floor. Creatures living in the deep sea depend on this falling matter for food.
Photo: Ji Hoon Justin Han In a new study, published in the journal PeerJ, scientists replicate a set of experiments from the 1970s to test whether corals on reefs in the Pacific are acclimatizing or adapting to increased thermal stress. Coral reefs around the globe are experiencing more frequent and severe high temperature events, which can lead to a bleaching response, in which corals lose their symbiotic algae. Bleached corals, which appear white after losing their zooxanthellae, can die if the environmental conditions do not improve. In the 1970’s, a set of experiments was... (more)