The Beacon

Oceana’s blog about the latest ocean news, policy and science.

Celebrate National Seafood Month with This Sustainable Recipe: Roasted Black Cod

National Seafood Month celebrates sustainable seafood

Roasted black cod. (Photo: Larry / Flickr Creative Commons)

October is National Seafood Month, a time to raise awareness for sustainable fisheries and celebrate the benefits of seafood in one’s diet.


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Photos: How Cuttlefish Master the Art of Disguise

Cuttlefish are a member of the cephalopod family

A common cuttlefish (Sepia officinalis) off Italy. (Photo: Oceana / Carlos Suárez)

This week marks International Cephalopod Awareness Days, a time to celebrate these invertebrates and bring attention to their conservation. Earlier this week, Oceana discussed octopus vision, and also recently celebrated them during Cephalopod Week. Now, Oceana is bringing attention to a lesser-known cephalopod through a Creature Feature.  


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Ocean Roundup: Dolphin Intelligence May Be Overestimated, Penguin Personalities To Help with Climate Change Adaption, and More

New research shows that dolphins may not be as smart as thought

Dolphins may not be as intelligent as assumed. (Photo: Oceana / Tim Calver)

- It turns out that pollution and runoff may be having a much bigger impact on the Great Barrier Reef than previously thought. New research shows that pollution may be decreasing organisms’ ability to photosynthesize, thereby making it harder to absorb CO2. The Guardian


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Video: Oceana in Belize Exposes Belizean First Family to Belizean World Heritage Sites

Belize's first family visits the Great Blue Hole

Belize's Prime Minister Dean Barrow's wife and daughter visit the Great Blue Hole. (Photo Oceana / Alex Ellis)

The Great Blue Hole, a Belizean National Monument and World Heritage Site, is one of the most gorgeous marine settings in the world. Situated just over 50 miles east of Belize City in the Lighthouse Reef Atoll, the rare reef formation stretches over 1,000 feet wide and over 400 feet deep. Previously an above-ground cave that’s sunk underwater, this sinkhole is teeming with marine life and is a haven for divers and ocean enthusiasts. Belize is home to three of the Caribbean’s four natural coral reef atolls.


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Photos: Celebrate World Sight Day with a Look at Ocean Animals’ Unique Vision

On World Sight Day check out ocean animal eyesight

A common octopus (Octopus vulgaris). Octopuses have excellent vision. (Photo: Oceana / Carlos Minguell)

On October 9, Oceana and our friends at TOMS are celebrating World Sight Day, a time to raise awareness on blindness and vision impairment around the world. On our end, we think World Sight Day provides an excellent opportunity to also celebrate the truly unique vision in marine animals. The diversity of ocean animal eyesight and capabilities—which must tolerate different salinity levels, pressure gradients, and more—is truly astounding, and deserves a closer look.


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Ocean Roundup: Seaweed Transporting Disease to Sea Otters, Lego to Break Ties with Shell, and More

Seaweed particles are helping spread disease among sea otters

Seaweed particles are helping spread disease among sea otters. (Photo: Vicki & Chuck Rogers / Flickr Creative Commons)

- Scientists have recently discovered that some mangroves are offering coral reef shelter and protection from climate change. In Hurricane Hole, a mangrove habitat in the U.S. Virgin Islands, scientists found 30 species of coral growing underwater. Science Daily


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Video: Oceana Supporter Maya Gabeira Determined To Keep Surfing after Near-Fatal Accident

Maya Gabeira was featured in Outside magazine

Maya Gabeira pictured during her Oceana PSA. (Photo: Oceana / Brian Bielmann Photography)

It was a year ago this month when champion big-wave surfer Maya Gabeira set out to ride the biggest wave ever ridden by a woman off Nazaré, Portugal. She's surfed 46-foot waves in South Africa, but nothing like the monstrous 50-foot-plus waves that formed off the underwater cliffs in the Atlantic last October. As Gabeira set out to ride one of these massive waves, she fell into the surf and suffered a near-fatal accident before being rescued.  


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Oceana Takes Action to Reduce Wasted Catch in East Coast Gillnet Fisheries

Ocean submitted a letter to reduce gillnet bycatch

An illegal Moroccan drift gillnet boat hauls in a sea turtle. (Photo: Oceana / Jesus Renedo)

Last month, Oceana submitted a proposal aimed at reducing the amount of wasted catch in New England and Mid-Atlantic gillnet fisheries, which throw away 16 percent of their total catch every year. The Northeast gillnet fisheries were identified in Oceana’s Wasted Catch report as one of the nine most wasteful fisheries in the United States as a result of their bycatch.


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Ocean Roundup: Orcas Can Shift Vocal Sounds around Dolphins, Larval Fish Found to Make Noise, and More

Orcas were found to engage in cross-species vocal learning

Orcas were found to engage in cross-species vocal learning. (Photo: Courtesy of Dr. Brandon Southall, NMFS/OPR / Flickr Creative Commons)

- Humans, cetaceans, and some birds are some of the only species known to practice vocal learning—communicating with sounds that aren’t just innate. Researchers found orcas not only practice this, but orcas engage in cross-species vocal learning, meaning they shift sounds depending on who they’re hanging out with. Science Daily


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Small Crabs Play a Big Role as Corals’ First Line of Defense from Predators

A crab (Trapezia sp.) defends its coral host. (Photo: Richard Ling / Flickr Creative Commons)

Just as some people have their own sorts of protections from intruders, some corals have their own creative defenses to guard them from predation. It’s a hard knock life for corals: In addition to ocean acidification, overfishing, and nutrients pollution, corals have to deal with sea stars and snails that can devour them.


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