Category Archives: sealife

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.

Basking shark Bali

Basking shark seen for first time in Indonesia

A recent stranding of a basking shark (Cetorhinus maximus) in north-western Bali is the first confirmed record of this large, filter-feeding shark species in Indonesian waters. The shark was an adult male. It is possible that the Indonesian throughflow – the warm ocean current which moves water from the Pacific to the Indian Ocean – is […]

Loggerhead Turtle, Caretta caretta

Loggerhead turtles home in on nests magnetically

Mother turtles find their way back to nesting beaches by looking for unique magnetic signatures along the coast, according to a new study published in Current Biology. Loggerhead turtles, for example, leave the beach where they were born as hatchlings and traverse entire ocean basins before returning to nest, at regular intervals, on the same stretch of […]

Great white shark

Like Sharks? Volunteer with Great White Shark Project

The 1974 film “Jaws” immortalized the Great White but also did more damage to the image of the Great White Shark than they could ever do themselves. Despite all the fear and celebrity, very little is known about these aquatic behemoths. Scientists who have studied Carcharodon carcharias (jagged tooth) aren’t even sure how they reproduce. […]

Frog Fish, Great Barrier Reef

Great Barrier Reef: Australia to ban Sediment Dumping on Part of Reef

Australia has declared that it will ban dumping of sediment in the marine park area of the Great Barrier Reef, but not in the entire World Heritage Site. This matters because, according to environmental pressure group Fight for the Reef, in recent years 80% of dumping has been in World Heritage waters just outside the […]

Crustacean

Sex-change crustaceans retain some masculinity

Male crustaceans avoid being completely feminised by pollutant-contaminated seawater as they “lock down” their maleness. New research by scientists at the University of Portsmouth has shown that crustaceans turned partially into females but retained a core of masculinity, and they may have learned how to do it after evolutionary battles with parasites. The research is […]