Blog

  • Dead men's fingers - a cosy soft coral

    Author: Signe Damkjaer
    Date: October 26, 2011

    Dead men's fingers, Kattegat Denmark. © OCEANA / Carlos Minguell

    If you still dont know how to dress up for this weekend's Halloween-party, how about this soft coral. Dead men’s fingers  (Alcyonium digitaturn) may have scared at least a diver or two. The conspicuous name reveals that the animal looks a bit like the swollen hand of a dead person. Dead men’s fingers is a soft coral  found in  coastal areas in the northern Atlantic, and  is common in most areas of the Baltic Sea.  The picture is from Kattegat, and was taken during Oceana’s expedition in the Baltic Sea in the spring 2011.

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  • Red Coral, Red Alert?

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 24, 2011

    Red coral (Corallium rubrum). Medas Islands, Gerona, Spain. Catamaran Oceana Ranger Mediterranean Expedition. July 2006. © OCEANA / Juan Cuetos

    Red coral (sometimes called precious coral) is widely used throughout the world for jewelry, and in beauty products.  The human “appetite” for this stunning coral, which dates as far back as ancient Greece and Egypt, when red coral was considered to have sacred properties, has unfortunately led to the destruction of many red coral colonies, and there are concerns about the sustainability of coral harvesting.

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  • Friday Meet & Greet: The Dusky Grouper

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 21, 2011

    Dusky grouper (Epinephelus marginatus) with the mouth opened in rocky seabed with algae. El Bajón, La Restinga-Mar de las Calmas Marine Reserve, El Hierro, Canary Islands, Spain. Canary Islands Oceana Ranger Expedition. September 2009. © OCEANA / Carlos Suárez

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  • Eelpout - closer to mammals than you might think

    Author: Signe Damkjaer
    Date: October 20, 2011

    Eelpout (Zoarces Viviparus) is one of the most common species in the Baltic Sea. It is also found in the coastal areas of North East Atlantic. Not much of looker, few people are aware how interesting a fish the eelpout actually is. Danish research has brought forward the extraordinary fact, that the eelpout suckle its offspring just like mammals. The eelpout belong to those around 750 fish species that give birth instead of laying eggs.

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  • Atlantic Habitat Protection: Putting our Expedition Data to use

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 20, 2011

    Today is a really exciting day for us. In 2008, OSPAR developed a list of Threatened and/or Declining Species and Habitats. The list is unfortunately vague in many habitat definitions, which prevents a common and clear understanding of where they occur.

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  • Friday meet & greet: Sea Stickleback

    Author: Signe Damkjaer
    Date: October 14, 2011

    The Sea Stickleback (Spinachia spinachia), which is also sometimes called the fifteen-spined stickleback (because it characteristically has between 14-17 dorsal spines).

    Adults generally live solitary or in pairs, in shallow coastal areas and feed on small invertebrates. This fish can reach up to 25cm in length and is commonly found.

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  • Underwater seismic activity in the Canary Islands

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 11, 2011

    Since mid-July, seismic activity has been detected around El Hierro (one of the Canary Islands) with experts claiming over 9,600 earthquakes, most too mild to be felt, have occurred.

    Recent data, according to the news, is suggesting that yesterday morning there was in fact an underwater eruption at around 4:30 am local time, and gases have  been detected about 7 miles from La Restinga at depths of around 600m. Because the eruption seems to have taken place underwater, warnings were given for fishermen to avoid the area.

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  • Investigative journalists take on subsidies, illegal fishing and seafood fraud in Spain

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 10, 2011

    Last week, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists   (ICIJ) released 4 in depth articles, as part of their “Looting the Seas” project that we think are worth sharing with you.

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  • Making art in the sand

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 10, 2011

    Sam Dougados practices an interesting type of art that he dubs, “beach art”. Using a rake, he etches incredible patterns into the sand, photographing them before the tide washes them away.

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  • Friday meet & greet: Striped Seasnail

    Author: Angela Pauly
    Date: October 7, 2011

    We’ve been slacking on our Friday meet & greet blogs that introduce you to some cool species. But after a summer of expedition, in the Baltic, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean, our photo albums are bursting at the seams, full of beautiful and interesting creatures.

    So without further ado, meet a striped Seasnail (Liparis liparis). We found this little one in the Bubbling Reefs of Hirsholmene Marine Reserve in the Kattegat Sea (Denmark).

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