Oceana’s blog about the latest ocean news, policy and science.
- A new analysis focusing on sea level rise found that coastal flooding has dramatically increased in frequency along the Eastern Seaboard in recent years. The analysis found that flood levels met or exceeded NOAA’s flood thresholds more than 20 days a year in six coastal cities. Reuters
Discarding fish is akin to throwing money into the ocean, yet the U.S. fishing industry wastes millions of pounds of seafood each year. Bycatch is not only wasteful, but kills countless numbers of marine creatures like dolphins, sea turtles, and sharks in the process.
When you hear about marine life in the Gulf of Mexico, your first thoughts probably turn to sea turtles, shellfish, and brown pelicans. The Gulf is, of course, much richer in biodiversity than that short list, and home to other species like whale sharks and manatees. But, one research program is looking beyond these charismatic species of the Gulf, and recently captured unprecedented footage of marine life near some of the Gulf’s less-well-known habitat like caves and deep sea corals.
Late last month, the OSPAR Commission, a group of 15 European governorning bodies and the European Union that works to protect marine life, adopted a landmark Regional Action Plan to combat litter and protect 16 vulnerable species and habitat. This article, which originally appeared on Oceana in Europe's blog, takes a close look at some of the species protected by the decision.
- Prince Charles and his International Sustainability Unit want to turn fisheries into an investment opportunity, according to a new report. The report said that approaching fisheries management sustainably could help achieve social, environmental, and economic goals. The Guardian
In June, researchers found that whale poo is highly beneficial to marine ecosystems in the Southern Ocean since it is rich in iron. Now, new findings show that whales’ contribution to the sea goes far beyond just their excrements.
Today, the federal government designated thousands of miles of beaches and open ocean around the southeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States as critical habitat for loggerhead sea turtles. The area, which covers 685 miles of nesting beach from North Carolina to Mississippi and more than 300,000 square miles of ocean habitat from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, is the largest designation to-date of critical habitat—making this ruling a victory and a historic step for loggerhead sea turtle recovery.
- This week, scientists officially named the largest flying creature ever discovered. Pelagornis sandersi, a type of early bird, relied on the oceans to keep it airborne when it lived 25 million years ago. To be able to fly with its massive 20- to 24-foot wingspan, scientists say this bird relied on air currents from the oceans to boost it into the area, where it scooped up prey from waves with a toothed beak.
Climate change is going to leave some fish feeling very lonely in the coming years, as new research shows that increasing carbon dioxide levels prevent them from recognizing their friends.
Last week, a new study revealed Chilean devil rays to be some of the oceans' deepest-divers, often taking dives deeper than a mile under the water's surface. The rays' physiology hinted at this discovery, since they do have a retia mirabilia—an organ found in other deep-divers like great white sharks. Following the study's findings, Oceana in Europe's Angela Pauly took a close look at the Chilean devil ray. This blog first appeared on Oceana in Europe's blog.