SeaHarmony welcomes all ocean scientists, ocean educators, resource managers, artists, and ocean related organizations and community groups.
Scientists in Canada got a surprise while doing studies on human forensics. To look at how bodies decompose, they tossed pig carcasses into so called "dead zones", areas of low oxygen in the ocean. However, much to their surprise, sharks, lobsters, and other scavengers risked going into these suffocating conditions and ate their experiment!
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.
If you could take all of the bigger organisms of the ocean (whales, sharks, fish, squid) and add up their total weight, and then took all of the microscopic organisms (like plankton) in the ocean and added up their total weight, which one would weigh more? You might be surprised to hear that the microscopic organisms weigh over 40 times more than all other organisms in the ocean combined!
Ocean phytoplankton produce at least half of the oxygen that we breathe. Though small in size they are able to produce as much oxygen as all of the land plants on earth combined. While trees and plants usually get all the credit for our oxygen, we actually should be thanking our marine plankton!
Have you heard of coral bleaching? That is what happens when corals lose their green or brown colored algae living inside of them due to environmental stress such as warmer temperatures. If conditions return to normal fairly quickly, the algae will come back; but if conditions change for too long then the coral will be permanently bleached and won’t be able to survive.
56 million years ago, the planet warmed due to greenhouse gas emissions from methane hydrates, permafrost thawing, and volcanism, during a period known as the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM). This event, which occurred over several thousand years, raised global temperatures by 5-8°C and altered marine and terrestrial environments and climate. The PETM is the warmest period on earth since the extinction of dinosaurs approximately 66 million years ago. During the PETM, the poles were almost tropical and did not have ice. The oceans increased in temperature, became more acidic, and... (more)