299 news posts related to Marine Science

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Science at your fingertips: how the science of sand uncovers Earth’s mysteries  

beach on a sunny day in Washington State

Feeling cool, wet sand squish between your toes while walking along a beach is something that many of us take solace in — there’s just something special about that boundary between land and water. The beach serves as the backdrop for so many of life’s events: vacations, barbeques, camps, seashell searches, sporting events and even weddings. But the sand you track in on your towels and sandals is more than just something to vacuum up. 

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Moon jellies appear to be gobbling up zooplankton in Puget Sound

This aerial view shows the RV Rachel Carson inside a moon jelly aggregation on August 25, 2021, in Quartermaster Harbor. The concentration of tiny marine life known as copepods inside the moon jelly aggregation was as low as a quarter of the levels in other parts of the bay.

Swarms of jellies have been seen more frequently in Puget Sound over the past several decades, and some biologists speculate these fast-growing jellyfish will do especially well in the warmer oceans of the future. Moon jellies, or Aurelia labiata, are unique among the various jellyfish species inhabiting Puget Sound in that they form vast blooms. When populations spike, they can take over a single bay — creating a dramatic sight. 

Read more at UW News »

New story map unites sea gardens around the Pacific and shows the importance of revitalizing Indigenous mariculture practices for food sovereignty and resilience

Indigenous people have been stewarding the ocean for thousands of years. This stewardship has appeared in many different forms around the world, all of which represent a reciprocal relationship between humans and the sea rooted in deep, place-based knowledge. From octopus houses in Haida Gwaii to fish ponds in Hawai’i, an Indigenous mariculture renaissance is making waves as groups across the Pacific seek to revitalize these ancient techniques and traditions. 

Read more at Washington Sea Grant »

How COVID-19 changed research on the high seas

masked people aboard the thompson charting their course

For crew members of the UW research vessel Thomas G. Thompson, the last two years have been a test of preparedness and resilience while conducting research at sea. On top of the usual threats of rough seas and homesickness, seafarers now have to factor in the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, which has had a special knack for spreading rapidly on ships. While the isolated nature of research on the open ocean might have seemed like welcome distance from the rest of humanity during the early days of the pandemic, many will remember how some of the first stories of the virus’ potential came from shipboard outbreaks.  

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This tiny coastal fish wears a toothy coat of armor

pacific spinly lumpsucker as viewed from the side

The ocean is full of otherworldly creatures, seemingly from alien planets with alien capabilities. In most cases, the award for craziest looking critter would go to an invertebrate. But many fish are contenders, too, and there’s an oddly adorable one common in northwest waters. What does it look like? Imagine a golf ball. Now put some googly eyes on it and add a suction cup to its belly. 

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