New research and developments, in depth.

Sea Turtles Fake Out Predators with Decoy Turtle Nests

When leatherback and hawksbill sea turtles finish laying their eggs in newly dug nests on a beach, they pull a fast one on would be egg poachers. They create trails and decoy turtle nests a distance away from their real egg caches, scientists say in a new paper. ON THE NATURE DOCUMENTARIES, THE PROCESS OF SEA TURTLES NESTING ON THE BEACH is both charming and straightforward: Momma turtles crawl up the sand, dig a hole,

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Stunning Images, Diverse Entries in UPY2020

THE UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR COMPETITION is based in Great Britain but it attracts stunning entries from around the world, both in photo locations and photographers’ nationalities. Winners and runners up for UPY2020 captured images as diverse as seals in Antarctica, shark pups in a mangrove forest in the Bahamas, a tuna caught up in a fishing net in Italy, a beauteous cave entrance in the Maldives, trapon hunting in a fishball in Grand

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Effective Shark Finning Bans Advancing – Hopefully

Efforts to eliminate the cruel practice of shark finning – slashing the fins off captured sharks for financial gain and sending the mutilated sharks to certain, slow death in the oceans – has been a long slog of slow progress, inadequate measures and outright failures. But several steps supporting shark finning bans, including significant  measures in the U.S. Congress, offer hope for effective progress. A BILL THAT WOULD MAKE IT ILLEGAL TO BUY, SELL OR

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First the Study! Now the Movie! Great Whites Run Away!

The video just shows great white and orca fins breaking the surface, but it reinforces findings published in mid-2019 that great white sharks run away when killer whales show up. A link worth reading and viewing! GREAT WHITE SHARKS AREN’T SO TOUGH, RESEARCHERS REPORTED LAST SPRING. It turns out that they have apex predators of their own in orcas, or killer whales. “When confronted by orcas, white sharks will immediately vacate their preferred hunting ground

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Whales & Carbon: To Save the World, Save the Whales

As the world ponders ways to capture carbon and combat climate change, think about the idea of whales and carbon storage. During their long lifetimes, great whales takes gargantually more carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere than whole forests of trees – and keep it there. A new study underscores our cetacean cousins’ importance to our planet beyond just oceanic diversity.  GREAT WHALES SWIMMING IN THE OCEANS DON’T SPRING TO MIND AS A SOLUTION TO

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Manta Ray Socializing: Mantas Just Want to Hang Out

FAR FROM BEING FREE-RANGING LONERS, MANTA RAYS BOND WITH EACH OTHER in relationships that often last for extended periods, according to a five-year study of manta ray socializing in Indonesia. Some mantas form loosely connected groups to hang out with. Not surprisingly, like their human counterparts, female mantas form much tighter friendships with other females than males do among themselves. The males? Well, the boys’ groups were looser and they tend to cruise more. MANTA

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Meet the American Pocket Shark. It Glows. Maybe

POCKET SHARKS ARE SO SINGULAR THAT AS FAR AS THE WORLD KNOWS there are only two known species – and only one specimen of each. The first resides in a museum in Russia. The second, found in the Gulf of Mexico and just identified, has been given a scientific name but it’s probably going to be known as the American pocket shark. If having one specimen each of two species makes them the world’s rarest

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It’s Official: Human Pollution a Big Cause of Reef Loss

BLAME FOR MASSIVE CORAL DIEOFFS ON TROPICAL REEFS has largely centered on seemingly unstoppable ocean warming. But a new study of coral reef pollution focused on the Florida Keys has confirmed another major cause of coral loss – and, one that can be fixed. A review of 30 years bringing together data on rainfall events, man-made pollution and coral health has linked massive coral loss in the Keys to direct man-made pollution from improperly treated

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When Killer Whales Show Up, Great Whites Run Away

A NEW STUDY HAS FOUND THAT WHEN KILLER WHALES ARRIVE IN A FEEDING GROUND, GREAT WHITES SHARKS CLEAR OUT. In a study of great white sharks and killer whales, It turns out that great whites, renowned as the oceans’ apex predators, have apex predators of their own in orcas, or killer whales. Researchers at Monterrey Bay Aquarium and several partner organizations looked at patterns in the Greater Farallones National Marine Sanctuary off San Francisco, a

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The Conch Republic Has Just Banned Coral-Toxic Sunscreens, and So Should You!

THE EVIDENCE IS CLEAR: THE MOST COMMON CHEMICALS FOUND IN SUNSCREENS, OXYBENZONE AND OCTINOXATE, are damaging to coral reefs and contribute to coral bleaching. The city of Key West in Florida has just joined the state of Hawaii in voting to ban the sale of coral-toxic sunscreens. At stake is the health of their fragile reefs and, obviously, their futures as destinations for millions of divers and other tourists. They’d like to see reef-safe sunscreen

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