coral reefs

Sounds kinda weird.. but studying nearly identical coral reef systems off Australia, my collaborators and I discovered something unusual on the reefs subjected to nearly exclusive fishing of sharks—fish with significantly smaller eyes and tails. This provides evidence of body shape changes in fish due to human-driven shark declines from overfishing. In the study, our…

Changing Planet, Shark Week 2018, Wildlife

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By Rhett Bennett Sharks have been cruising the world’s oceans for millions of years. We know them as ferocious hunters, built for the kill. And some are. However, most shark and ray species have somewhat less aggressive feeding behaviour and, of course, many end up as food themselves. These magnificent creatures have adapted to an…

Wildlife

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By Shawn Heinrichs As young child growing up on the Wild Coast of South Africa, the ocean I knew was a very different place than the ocean we know now. The ocean of my childhood was vast and unfathomably bountiful, where billions of sardines migrated annually in shoals so vast and dense, that they turned…

Changing Planet

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  This winter (in the northern hemisphere), the Biosphere Foundation is undertaking a sea voyage on their 108-year-old ship through the gumdrop islands and turquoise waters of Raja Ampat — the most biologically-diverse marine ecosystem on the planet. A Homecoming I hadn’t seen her in over seven years, then there she was, resting peacefully on a…

Changing Planet, Human Journey, Wildlife

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By Vera Agostini, Senior Marine Scientist, The Nature Conservancy Major hurricanes like Sandy (New Jersey in 2012) and Ivan (Eastern Caribbean in 2004) and Typhoon Haiyan (the Philippines 2013) make global headlines as they hit coastal communities, appropriately drawing attention to the human, financial, and community losses. While some smaller communities may not make global…

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By Rob Brumbaugh, Integrated Ocean Management Lead, The Nature Conservancy I’ve just returned from Bali, Indonesia, where I spent three weeks working with The Nature Conservancy’s Indonesia marine program, and attending an international conference of scientists and economists exploring ways to make the human benefits of nature more apparent to policy makers and stakeholders everywhere. …

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Co-authored by Shah Selbe Ayana: Over the past year I’ve spent a lot of time speaking with Caribbean governments and stakeholders about potential ways to restore and sustainably manage their oceans. I speak about how marine reserves increase the number and size of fish, and restore ecosystems. How protecting key herbivores (parrotfish, surgeonfish, and urchins)…

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By Carl Safina and Elizabeth Brown The island nation of Palau is a legendary tropical coral paradise, with perhaps the most farsighted fisheries management in the Pacific. Palau has protected its reef fishes from the export business that has destroyed fish populations on many reefs for the limitless demand in China. That’s why Palau remains…

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This month, the National Aquarium in Baltimore opened a new permanent exhibit, Blacktip Reef. Based on the Indo-Pacific reefs found across a large swath of oceans, the exhibit is the largest of its kind in the world. Ocean Views spoke with the aquarium’s general curator, Jack Cover, about the new exhibit. How did you get…

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Before making changes to ocean management, it helps to know something about the status of living creatures and ecosystems you’re trying to use sustainably. So, nine marine biologists* (plus me makes ten) descended on Barbuda in May to conduct an ecological assessment of the fish, coral, lobster, conch, and water quality within 3 miles of…

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