Marine Biology News

Courtesy of Science Daily

Welcome to Sea and Sky's Marine Biology News. Here you can find links to the latest ocean news headlines in the topic of marine biology. Click on any yellow title below to view the full news article. The news article will open in a new browser window. Simply close the browser window when you are finished reading the article to return to the news article listing. You can use the "Click for More" link to go to a page with more news headlines.


Sea turtles' first days of life: Sprint and ride towards safety
With new nano-sized acoustic transmitters, scientists followed the pathways of loggerhead turtle hatchlings. According to the study, local oceanic conditions are believed to drive the evolution of some unique swimming behaviors.
Publ.Date : Thu, 23 Oct 2014 10:07:43 EDT

BOFFFFs (big, old, fat, fertile, female fish) sustain fisheries
A new compilation of research from around the world now shows that big, old, fat, fertile, female fish -- known as BOFFFFs to scientists -- are essential for ensuring that fishery stocks remain sustainable.
Publ.Date : Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:16:12 EDT

Ocean's living carbon pumps: When viruses attack giant algal blooms, global carbon cycles are affected
By some estimates, almost half of the world's organic carbon is fixed by marine organisms called phytoplankton -- single-celled photosynthetic organisms that account for less than one percent of the total photosynthetic biomass on Earth. When giant algal blooms get viral infections, global carbon cycles are affected, scientists have now discovered.
Publ.Date : Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:15:10 EDT

Fish tale: New study evaluates antibiotic content in farm-raised fish
Antibiotic use in the rapidly expanding world of global aquaculture has been examined in a new study. Results of the research evaluated the presence of antibiotics in shrimp, salmon, catfish, trout, tilapia and swai, originating from 11 countries. Data showed traces of 5 of the 47 antibiotics evaluated.
Publ.Date : Mon, 20 Oct 2014 13:49:08 EDT

Breathing sand: New measurement technique detects oxygen supply to bottom of North Sea
New analytical methods show for the first time, how the permeable, sandy sediment at the bottom of the North Sea is supplied with oxygen and which factors determine the exchange. Based on the detailed investigation and new measurement technology, the turnover of organic matter and nutrients at the sea floor as well as future changes within the dynamic ecosystem can be better assessed.
Publ.Date : Mon, 20 Oct 2014 10:53:29 EDT

Plastic nanoparticles also harm freshwater organisms
Organisms can be negatively affected by plastic nanoparticles, not just in the seas and oceans but in freshwater bodies too. These particles slow the growth of algae, cause deformities in water fleas and impede communication between small organisms and fish.
Publ.Date : Fri, 17 Oct 2014 09:29:16 EDT

Impact of offshore wind farms on marine species
Offshore wind power is a valuable source of renewable energy that can help reduce carbon emissions. Technological advances are allowing higher capacity turbines to be installed in deeper water, but there is still much unknown about the effects on the environment. Scientists have now reviewed the potential impacts of offshore wind developments on marine species and make recommendations for future monitoring and assessment as interest in offshore wind energy grows around the world.
Publ.Date : Thu, 16 Oct 2014 12:36:08 EDT

Turning humble seaweed into biofuel
The sea has long been a source of Norway’s riches, whether from cod, farmed salmon or oil. Now one researcher hopes to add seaweed to this list as he refines a way to produce “biocrude” from common kelp. "What we are trying to do is to mimic natural processes to produce oil," he said. "However, while petroleum oil is produced naturally on a geologic time scale, we can do it in minutes."
Publ.Date : Thu, 16 Oct 2014 08:56:50 EDT

Microfossils reveal warm oceans had less oxygen
Researchers are pairing chemical analyses with micropaleontology -- the study of tiny fossilized organisms -- to better understand how global marine life was affected by a rapid warming event more than 55 million years ago. Their findings are the subject of an article in the journal Paleoceanography.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 16:56:07 EDT

Could sleeper sharks be preying on protected Steller sea lions?
Pacific sleeper sharks, a large, slow-moving species thought of as primarily a scavenger or predator of fish, may be preying on something a bit larger -- protected Steller sea lions in the Gulf of Alaska. A new study has found the first indirect evidence that this cold-blooded shark that can grow to a length of more than 20 feet -- longer than a great white shark -- and may be an opportunistic predator of juvenile Steller sea lions.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 14:33:01 EDT

Riddle of the rock pools: How tiny fish camouflage themselves
Researchers have revealed that the rock goby (Gobius paganellus), an unassuming little fish commonly found in rock pools around Britain, southern Europe, and North Africa, is a master of camouflage and can rapidly change color to conceal itself against its background.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 14:31:49 EDT

Dolphin 'breathalyzer' could help diagnose animal and ocean health
Alcohol consumption isn't the only thing a breath analysis can reveal. Scientists have been studying its possible use for diagnosing a wide range of conditions in humans -- and now in the beloved bottlenose dolphin. One team describes a new instrument that can analyze the metabolites in breath from dolphins, which have been dying in alarming numbers along the Atlantic coast this year.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 11:23:25 EDT

Prehistoric crocodiles' evolution mirrored in living species
Crocodiles which roamed the world's seas millions of years ago developed in similar ways to their modern-day relatives, a study has shown. Fresh research into a group of prehistoric marine crocs known as Machimosaurus reveals key details of how and where they lived.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 10:17:25 EDT

Importance of dead jellyfish to deep-sea ecosystems
Dead jellyfish contribute to the deep-sea food chain, unlike previously thought, innovative experiments show. Researchers deployed lander systems to look at how scavengers responded to jellyfish and fish baits in the deep sea off Norway. The experiments were carried out in areas with jellyfish blooms near the ocean surface and showed that when the creatures fell to the seabed they were rapidly eaten by scavengers.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 10:15:43 EDT

Sharks that hide in coral reefs may be safe from acidifying oceans
The epaulette shark displays physiological tolerance to elevated carbon dioxide in its environment after being exposed to carbon dioxide levels equivalent to those that are predicted for their natural habitats in the near future.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 10:15:39 EDT

Ancient fossils of bizarre figure-eight water creatures confirmed among our strangest distant cousins
More than 100 years since they were first discovered, some of the world's most bizarre fossils have been identified as close relatives of vertebrates. The fossils belong to 500-million-year-old blind water creatures, known as "vetulicolians". Alien-like in appearance, these marine creatures were "filter-feeders" shaped like a figure eight. In a new paper, researchers argue for a change in the way these creatures are viewed, placing them with the same group that includes vertebrate animals, such as humans.
Publ.Date : Wed, 15 Oct 2014 10:13:41 EDT

Caribbean coral reef inhabitants critical in determining future of reefs
Species that live in and erode coral reefs will play a major role in determining the future of reefs, new research suggests. The research highlights the delicate balance that exists between bioerosion and carbonate production on coral reefs.
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Oct 2014 21:17:58 EDT

Taking infestation with a grain of salt: Salinity plays role in insect grazing
Salinity plays a major role in salt marsh grass's response to insect grazing, new research shows. Plants are always trying to deal with infestation by overcompensating and growing more, researchers say. "But when the plant gets too stressed by the salt, it doesn't care about the insects anymore."
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Oct 2014 12:43:11 EDT

Are there enough fish to go around?
The gap between declining wild fish supplies and healthy eating advice recommending more seafood has been addressed in a new report. Today, domestic fish supplies fall far below consumption levels recommended by experts, supplying just one fifth of the two portions per week advice. The shortfall has been masked in part by increased imports and aquaculture, which together raise the figure to four fifths.
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Oct 2014 08:49:36 EDT

Helping Japanese fishermen fight off crown-of-thorns starfish
The long term population dynamics of the Crown-of-Thorns starfish, Acanthaster planci, has been the focus of recent study. This is one of the most long term and extensive surveys of its kind, with data spanning over 24 years through cooperation with the Japanese fishing population of Onna Village in Okinawa. With fisherman providing a great deal of logistics support and data, researchers have been able to plot with a high degree of accuracy the movement and population size over time of A. planci.
Publ.Date : Sat, 11 Oct 2014 10:52:32 EDT