The Beacon: Brianna Elliott's blog

Ocean Roundup: Shark-Eating Dinosaur Fossils Discovered, Germany Paving Way for Cheaper Wind Energy, and More

Germany is a leading nation for wind energy

Wind turbines off England. Germany is setting such a demand for wind power that the price of turbines is starting to decrease. (Photo: Vattenfall / Flickr Creative Commons)

- According to a study published last week, scientists have found fossil evidence of the first semi-aquatic dinosaur. Spinosaurus aegyptiacus, known to prey on sharks, is the largest predatory dinosaur known to roam Earth— even bigger than T. rex specimens. The Washington Post


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Sharks and Rays Gain International Protection under CITES Listing

CITES Appendix II is protecting six new species of sharks and rays

An oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus), one of the species now protected under CITES Appendix II. (Photo: Michael Aston / Flickr Creative Commons)

Today, seven sharks and ray species have gained international protection under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), making it a wonderful day for shark and ray conservation. This means that seven new species have been added to CITES’ Appendix II, which regulates their global trade in an effort to prevent overexploitation.


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Offshore Drilling Risks Highlighted in Myrtle Beach Billboards

Oceana billboards in South Carolina are raising awareness about seismic

One of Oceana's billboards near Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. (Photo: Randy Sturgill / Oceana)

If you’re driving through the Myrtle Beach area over the next month, be sure to keep an eye out for several Oceana billboards in the area.


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Ocean Roundup: Western Australia Recommended to Halt Shark Cull, Orca Pod Saves Member from Fishing Gear, and More

Orca pod helped rescue a struggling member in fishing gear

A pod of orcas. Recently, members of an orca pod off New Zealand helped rescue a fellow whale from fishing gear. (Photo: Marie and Alistair Knock / Flickr Creative Commons)

- In a remarkable rescue, members of an orca pod helped save one of their own from fishing gear off New Zealand. Rescuers say the pod pushed the orca, who was carrying a 77-pound cray pot line, to the ocean’s surface to breath, and rescuers were then able to take over to free her from the gear. The Dodo


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Oceana Magazine: DiCaprio Funds Conservation Across the Entire Eastern Pacific

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation benefits Oceana

The Desventuradas Islands, Chile. (Photo: Oceana)

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation provided a three-year, $3 million grant that is allowing Oceana to expand conservation work across the Pacific Ocean and approach conservation from a hemisphere-wide scale. This article uncovers some of the beatiful, biodiverse locations that Oceana is focusing on because of this grant. This feature originally appeared in the summer issue of Oceana magazine


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Ocean Roundup: Healthy Corals Mean More Sharks, Extinct Dolphin Found in Peruvian Desert, and More

Sharks depend on healthy coral reefs

Caribbean reef shark (Carcharhinus perezi) over a reef. A new study found that reef health is important to shark abundance. (Photo: Oceana / Carlos Suárez)

- A new study shows that late-summer water temperatures near the Florida Keys are significantly warmer than they were a century ago. This temperature increase is causing slower coral growth, as well as increasing coral reef bleaching events. USGS News


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Oceana Provides Comments to President Obama’s Task Force to Tackle Illegal Fishing and Seafood Fraud

Oceana provided comments on President Obama's seafood task force

A fish market in Maryland. (Photo: Oceana / Jenn Hueting)

Late last month, the public comment period closed on the President’s Task Force on Combatting Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing and Seafood Fraud. During the comment period, the Task Force held four public meetings: two webinars and two in-person meetings, one in Seattle, Washington, and one in Washington, D.C. Oceana provided comments at both in-person meetings and submitted written comments as well.


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CITES Listing Countdown: Less Than One Week until Hammerheads are Protected

Hammerhead sharks will be protected under CITES

A great hammerhead shark (Sphyrna mokarran). (Photo: Wendell Reed / Flickr Creative Commons) 

On September 14, 2014, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) will add seven sharks and rays to Appendix II, meaning that global trade of these species will be restricted. At Oceana, we work to protect marine species from overexploitation every day, so we’re thrilled about the new listings. To celebrate, we’re spotlighting all seven species that are receiving protections on September 14 in a series of countdown blog posts on The Beacon.


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Ocean Roundup: Acidification Masking Shark Smelling Abilities, New Fishery Rule to Protect Endangered Albatross, and More

Smooth dogfish could lose their sense of smell from acidification

A smooth dogfish (Mustelus canis). (Photo: Erickson Smith / Flickr Creative Commons)

- NOAA has proposed a new rule to for West Coast commercial fishermen that intends to the endangered short-tailed albatross, a seabird whose numbers are down to 1,200 individuals. The rule requires fishermen to deploy streamer lines, already required off Alaska and Hawaii, which would scare off albatross from eating bait. The Associated Press


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How Does Your Sunscreen Impact Marine Life?

Chemicals in sunscreen can cause coral reef bleaching

Sunscreen can cause coral reef bleaching. (Photo: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters / Flickr Creative Commons)

Here in the U.S., many tourists and beachgoers just wrapped up trips to the beach for the season. That also means that millions of people lathered themselves in sunscreen to protect themselves from harmful sun rays — a precautionary measure that you’re taught to do at a young age. But while this lotion protects humans, a growing body of research shows that it has an impact on oceans.


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