Category Archives: science

A new study by researchers at the University of Cambridge has shown that the dottyback, a small predatory reef fish, can change the colour of its body to imitate a variety of other reef fish species, allowing the dottyback to sneak up undetected and eat their young. Its Latin name, Pseudochromis, means false damselfish - giving clue to its mimicry abilities.

Dottyback reef fish is a “wolf in sheep’s clothing”

A new study by researchers at the University of Cambridge has shown that the dottyback, a small predatory reef fish, can change the colour of its body to imitate a variety of other reef fish species, allowing the dottyback to sneak up undetected and eat their young. Its Latin name, Pseudochromis, means false damselfish – […]

diatoms

Ocean bacteria “pumped-up” by dying plankton

Scientists have discovered a surprising new short-circuit to the biological pump. They found that sinking particles of stressed and dying phytoplankton release chemicals that have a steroid-like effect on marine bacteria feeding on the particles. The chemicals juice up the bacteria’s metabolism causing them to more rapidly convert organic carbon in the particles back into […]

Galapagos shark, Carcharhinus galapagensis

Scientists urge Brazil to take a stand on protecting marine life

Brazil fisheries have no bag or size limits for any species of fish and even the most basic fisheries statistics, such as the numbers and weights of fish being caught, are a blank space. The newly published Red List of Brazilian species at risk from extinction, identifies 83 types of marine animal aslo commercially exploited by fisheries. The Galapagos shark is an example of a keystone species thought to have been fished to regional extinction due to decades of nonexistent fisheries regulations. This species is one of many that could have greatly benefited from management plans that help reduce by-catch and prevent the overexploitation of fishing stocks.

SENSOR SNIFFS OUT METHANE IN DEEP-SEA VENTS AND COWS

Sensor sniffs out methane in deep-sea vents and cows

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas that traps heat about 20 times more effectively than carbon dioxide. Understanding the sources of methane, and how the gas is formed, could give scientists a better understanding of its role in warming the planet. Now a research team including scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Woods […]

Pacific blue-fin tuna

How warm-bodied tuna hearts keep pumping in killer cold

When tunas dive down to cold depths their body temperature stays warm but their heart temperature can fall by 15 degrees within minutes. The heart is chilled because it receives blood directly from the gills which mirrors water temperature. This clearly imposes stress upon the heart but it keeps beating, despite the temperature change. In most other animals the heart would stop.