The Beacon

Ocean Roundup: Sea Otter Teeth Stronger than Human’s, Sri Lanka May Face International Fishing Ban, and More

Sea otter teeth are two times stronger than human teeth

Sea otter teeth may be twice as strong as human teeth. (Photo: Alan Wolf / Flickr Creative Commons)

- New research shows that tiny microbes found along seamounts and the seafloor play a big role in sequestering methane. The scientists are still unsure as to how much methane these microbes take in, but say that they play a significant role in keeping methane from entering the water column. Grist


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Video: Two Ocean Heroes Recognized for Marine Conservation Work by Oceana in Belize

Lisa Carne and Jamal Galves received Oceana's ocean hero awards

Oceana in Belize Ocean Heroes Lisa Carne and Jamal Galves. (Photo: Alexander Ellis / Flickr)

Oceana has celebrated Ocean Hero Awards since 2009—a way to recognize and honor leaders in ocean conservation, education, and advocacy. Past recipients range from Jean Beasley, founder and director of the Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehabilitation Center and winner of the Animal Planet Hero of the Year, as well as Don Voss, an avid scuba diver who founded a marine debris organization.


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Deep Sea Sharks in Northeast Atlantic Still at Risk from Overexploitation, Warns Group

Deep sea sharks are over-exploited in Northeast Atlantic waters

Angular rough shark (Oxynotus centrina), a deep-sea shark species pictured off Spain. (Photo: Oceana)

The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), a network of over 4,000 scientists, warn that sharks in deep waters in the Northeast Atlantic continue to face a bleak future. ICES provided recommendations for three deep-sea shark species—kite fin sharks, leafscale gulper sharks, and Portguese dogfish sharks—and advise that these sharks should not be involved in fishery activities.


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Ocean Roundup: Oceans Seeing Largest Sea Level Rise in 6,000 Years, Red King Crab Fishery Opens in Alaska, and More

The Bristol Bay red king crab fishery opens this week

A red king crab. The fishery opens this week in Alaska. (Photo: Haddock L, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service / Wikimedia Commons)

- New research suggests that icebergs from the North American ice sheet once drifted past Florida when it began to melt 20,000 years ago. This research is supported by “massive scars” found along the continental shelf off Florida. Discovery News


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Green Sea Turtle Tumors Linked to Nitrogen Runoff in Hawaii, Study Says

Nitrogen runoff is linked with green sea turtle tumors

A green sea turtle with tumors (Chelonia mydas). (Photo: Peter Bennett & Ursula Keuper-Bennett / Wikimedia Commons)

Green sea turtles are an endangered species, at risk from poaching, incidental take in fishing gear, and coastal development. But they also suffer from fibropapillomatosis—the leading cause of death in this endangered species—which causes tumors to grow along sea turtles’ faces, flippers, and internal organs.


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Vibrant Giant Clams May Influence Solar Technology

Giant clam lips could influence solar technology

A giant clam (Tridacna gigas) in the Maldives. The vibrant lips of giant clams could influence solar technology. (Photo: Malcolm Browne / Flickr Creative Commons)

The vivacious blue lips of giant clams dot shallow bays and reef communities throughout the Indo-Pacific region, adding vibrant patterns to the seafloor. Like many other creatures with elaborate hues—say, the poison dart frog, whose bright colors helps ward off predators—the bright blue lips of the giant clam aren’t just there to impress onlookers.


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Ocean Roundup: Seven Sharks Illegally Caught in Costa Rica National Park, Dolphins Cross-Breeding in UK Waters, and More

Dolphins are cross-breeding off the UK

A bottlenose dolphin and calf. New research shows bottlenose dolphins off the UK are cross-breeding with other species. (Photo: Oceana / Soledad Esnaola)

- Scientists warn that otters off of Scotland are only living for about a third of the time than those off mainland Europe, largely due to more polluted waters and prey sources. The scientists warn that the short lifespans are troublesome because it keeps the otter population from being able to breed. The Scotsman


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