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The mimic octopus is an incredible animal that can impersonate the appearance and movement patterns of a lionfish, crab, jellyfish, and many other animals. However, scientists have recently found a small jawfish whose coloration copies the mimic octopus, mimicking one of the octopus’ arms!
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.
Water is a unique molecule. Most liquids become denser as they cool down, but when water freezes, it becomes less dense, allowing ice to float. If ice did not float, a lot of animals would be in trouble. In fresh water ecosystems, animals rely on the top layer of water freezing over, which actually allows heat to be trapped underneath and keeps them alive through the winter.
In the deep ocean, a hairy-armed crab called the "yeti" crab has an interesting source of food. The crab farms bacteria on its hairy arms and then scrapes the bacteria into its mouth. Talk about self-sustaining!
One species of squid which lives in the depths of the Pacific Ocean does not bother to distinguish male from female when mating. At the dark depths where sight is limited, male and female squid look very similar, so males will mate with and attach sperm packets to any squid of the same species. Now that’s being opportunistic.
Within the past week, sensors at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii recorded carbon dioxide levels reaching 415 part per million, the highest in human history. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas released by the burning of fossil fuels including coal, oil, and natural gas, which then trap solar radiation in the Earth’s atmosphere. Anthropogenic, or human-caused, release of carbon dioxide is responsible for global temperature increases associated with climate change. In 2018 alone, carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere increased 2.7% (approx. 2.5ppm) and this rate is expected to... (more)