Justine Hausheer's blog

Creature Feature: Magnificent Frigatebird

Posted Fri, Sep 20, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to birds, cool marine creatures, creature feature, seabirds

Yes, that’s a bird, and yes, it’s supposed to look like that. (Photo: Mark Vance)

Magnificent frigatebirds aren’t the beauty queens of the bird world, but they do get points for bold style. These seabirds have a seven foot wingspan and an inflatable, bright-red throat sac under their bills that they used in elaborate courtship displays. Only the males have these sacs—female frigatebirds have a non-inflatable white neck, making them the only seabird species where the males and females look very different.


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The Amazing Disappearing Octopus

Posted Wed, Sep 18, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to cephalopods, cool marine creatures, cool video, octopus, science

Now you see me, now you don’t. (Photo: Snailgenie) 

This amazing video has been making the rounds on the internet for a while, be we still couldn’t resist sharing it with you! You may know that an octopus can change the color of its skin to blend in with its surroundings. But did you know they were this good?


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Fleet of Gliding Robots Collect Ocean Data

Posted Tue, Sep 17, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to marine animals, marine science, research, robots, water temperatures

A slocum glider, with its wings, is prepped before deployment. (Photo: Christena MacDonald, OTN/MEOPAR)

It’s a bird… it’s a plane… it’s an ocean-going robot! Scientists from the United States and Canada are teaming up to launch up to 14 ocean-monitoring robotic gliders. These gliders are collecting data on ocean conditions and marine life along the eastern seaboard, traveling from the coast to the edge of the continental shelf.


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Creature Feature: Loggerhead Sea Turtle

Posted Fri, Sep 13, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to cool marine creatures, creature feature, loggerhead, loggerhead sea turtle, marine creatures

A loggerhead sea turtle. (Photo: Wendell Reed)

If you're a fan of sea turtles, you might have heard about the mighty loggerhead sea turtle. Growing 2 to 3 feet long and weighing in at a massive 165–350 pounds, loggerheads are heavier than many people. These reptiles are actually the second-largest marine turtle (only the leatherback is larger.) Named for their hefty heads, loggerheads are found in tropical and temperate waters around the world.


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Measles-Like Virus Likely Responsible for Atlantic Dolphin Strandings

Posted Mon, Sep 9, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to atlantic, dolphin, dolphin strandings, mass strandings, noaa

Atlantic bottlenose dolphins are suffering from a viral epidemic. (Photo: Oceana)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced that a measles-like virus is responsible for hundreds of bottlenose dolphin strandings along the mid-Atlantic coast this summer.

Since early July, unusually high numbers of dead or dying bottlenose dolphins have washed ashore from New York to North Carolina. About 155 dolphins strand in the mid-Atlantic from January to late August during a normal year, but this year almost 500 dolphins washed ashore in the same time period. The sudden increase prompted NOAA to declare an Unusual Mortality Event for bottlenose dolphins.


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Creature Feature: Lionfish

Posted Thu, Sep 5, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to atlantic, cool marine creatures, creature feature, invasive species, lionfish

Up close and personal with a lionfish

Up close and personal with a lionfish. (Photo: Kjeld Friis)

It’s venomous, voracious, and taking over reefs across the western Atlantic.

This strange-looking predator is a lionfish, a.k.a. Pterois volitans. Native to Indo-Pacific reefs, lionfish are anything but subtle. The large, striped spines protruding from their bodies are their main defense, filled with neurotoxic venom to deter predators. While the venom isn’t deadly to humans, running afoul of a lionfish isn’t fun—side effects include excruciating pain, headaches, difficulty breathing, and vomiting. Lesson learned: don’t mess with a lionfish. 


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Pacific Expedition Featured on Local Oregon News

Posted Thu, Sep 5, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to oregon, oregon expedition, press, ROV

The expedition team poses with the underwater ROV. (Photo: Oceana)

 

Great news from our Pacific expedition team! On September 3 the local Portland station KGW featured the expedition on the evening news.

This August, Oceana set sail to document deep sea corals and sponges off the rugged Oregon Coast using a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) outfitted with high-definition underwater cameras. The areas they explored are places that we proposed be protected from bottom trawling, which destroys important habitat on the sea floor.  


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Offshore Wind Development Expands Along Virginia’s Coast

Posted Wed, Sep 4, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to lease sale, offshore wind, virginia

Offshore wind turbines can help stop deadly drilling disasters like the 2010 Gulf Oilspill. (Photo: phault) 

 

We have some exciting news to share on our efforts to promote renewable energy: today the United States Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) leased almost 113,000 acres off the coast of Virginia for wind energy development in a live auction.


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Whales Get Sunburns, Too

Posted Tue, Sep 3, 2013 by Justine Hausheer to blue whales, fin whales, research, sperm whales

Sperm whales can develop sunburn-like blisters when swimming near the surface. (Photo: Paul Richards)

 

If you head to the beach without sunscreen, you’ll probably return home with a scarlet, painful sunburn. That’s because you’ve exposed your skin to several hours of UV rays, which damage DNA within your skin cells. But did you know that whales can get sunburned, too?


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