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Deep-diving whales and other marine mammals can get the bends—the same painful and potentially life-threatening decompression sickness that strikes scuba divers who surface too quickly. A new study offers a hypothesis of how marine mammals generally avoid getting the bends and how they can succumb under stressful conditions.
What if we explored the ocean’s vast twilight zone, teeming with undiscovered life? Today, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) was awarded $35 million—the largest philanthropic gift in the Institution’s history—to do just that. The award comes from The Audacious Project, a bold new philanthropic collaboration housed at TED to fund critical ideas that have potential to create massive, global change.
Colonies of breeding king penguins behave much like particles in liquids do, according to new study by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and international colleagues. This "liquid " organization and structure enables breeding colonies to protect themselves against predators while also keeping members together.
For the first time ever, a team of international researchers were given the rare opportunity to observe and film a dumbo octopus—measuring just a few centimeters—hatching from its egg during an expedition to explore a chain of underwater mountains off the U.S. East Coast in 2005. Their findings were published Feb. 19, 2018, in the journal Current Biology.
Just like with humans, the skin on marine mammals serves as an important line of defense against pathogens in their environment. A new study sheds light on the skin microbiome—a group of microorganisms that live on skin—in healthy humpback whales, which could aid in future efforts to monitor their health.
The rising acidity of the oceans threatens coral reefs by making it harder for corals to build their skeletons. A new study identifies the details of how ocean acidification affects coral skeletons, allowing scientists to predict more precisely where corals will be more vulnerable.
Rising temperatures along the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean will force American lobsters (H. americanus) farther offshore and into more northern waters, according to a new study led by researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI).
Heidi Sosik, a senior scientist in the Biology Department at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) has been named a 2018 Fellow of The Oceanography Society (TOS). Sosik's accomplishments will be formally recognized on Feb. 13, 2018, during a ceremony at the 2018 Ocean Sciences Meeting in Portland, Oregon.
A new study by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and colleagues identified for the first time an extensive conserved group of bacteria within healthy humpback whales' blow—the moist breath that whales spray out of their blowholes when they exhale.
Unlike other species that migrate successfully to escape the wrath of climate change, a new study shows that dispersal may help sustain global Emperor penguin populations for a limited time, but, as sea ice conditions continue to deteriorate, the 54 colonies that exist today will face devastating declines by the end of this century.
As Earth warms due to human-caused climate change, extreme climatic events like heat waves, droughts, and spikes in ocean temperatures have increased and are projected to become even more common by the end of this century. To assess impacts to albatrosses, Jenouvrier and her coauthors examined sea surface temperature data and records of extreme warming events since 1978 on albatrosses breeding at Kerguelen Island.
WHOI scientists and their international colleagues conducted the largest, most comprehensive study of larval dispersal at coral reefs. Their findings have important implications for the sizing and spacing of marine reserves.
The first genetic study of the diversity of clinging jellyfish populations around the globe discovered some surprising links among distant communities of jellies and also revealed there may be more than one species of the infamous stinger. The paper published April 18 in the journal Peer J.
New research highlights the devastation caused when global-scale ocean warming interacts with short-lived weather anomalies, and adds urgency to the question of how reefs will fare through the end of this century.
To better understand and manage the intricate ecosystem off the Northeast U.S. coast, the National Science Foundation has announced the selection of this critical ocean region for a new Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site led by WHOI.
Home to an immense diversity of marine life, the deep ocean also contains valuable minerals with metals such as nickel, copper, cobalt, manganese, zinc, and gold, and rare-earth elements used in electronic technology like smart phones and medical imaging machines. As demand for these resources increases and supplies on land decrease, commercial mining operators are looking to the deep ocean as the next frontier for mining.
Killifish living in four polluted East Coast estuaries have adapted to survive levels of toxic industrial pollutants that would normally kill them, tolerating concentrations up to 8,000 times higher than sensitive fish. A new study reveals the complex genetic basis for the Atlantic killifish’s remarkable resilience.
A new study from WHOI indicates that superoxide—a natural toxin believed to be the main culprit behind coral bleaching—may actually play a beneficial role in coral health and resilience.
The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation selected Mak Saito, a biogeochemist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI), as one of eight awardees of a 2016 Postdoctoral Program in Environmental Chemistry grant.
A new multiyear study from scientists at WHOI has shown for the first time how changes in ocean temperature affect a key species of phytoplankton.
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