Press Room

WHOI-engineered DISCO allows scientists to measure highly reactive superoxide on coral reefs

December 12, 2019

Researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) successfully conceived and tested a portable device, DISCO, that performed the first in situ measurements of a highly reactive type of oxygen, known as superoxide, which may play an integral role in the...

WHOI Board Launches Presidential Search

December 9, 2019

The Board of Trustees at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) announced the formation of the Presidential Search Committee (PSC), whose members are tasked with recommending the Institution’s next president and director. Dr. Mark Abbott, current WHOI president and director, announced...

Whales may owe their efficient digestion to millions of tiny microbes

December 4, 2019

A study by researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) shows that the microbial communities inside whales may play an important role in the digestion of one of the ocean’s most abundant carbon-rich lipids, known as a wax ester. Their...

WHOI president to step down next year

December 3, 2019

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) President and Director Mark Abbott plans to step down at the end of 2020. Abbott announced his intentions to the WHOI community at a town hall meeting on Nov. 15, 2019, noting that the timing...

Clownfish can’t adapt to rapid environmental changes

November 26, 2019

The beloved anemone fish popularized by the movies “Finding Nemo” and “Finding Dory” don’t have the genetic capacity to adapt to rapid changes in their environment, according to a new study by France’s National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), Woods...

SeaWorld & Busch Gardens conservation fund commits $900,000 to protect critically endangered North Atlantic right whales

November 14, 2019

The SeaWorld & Busch Gardens Conservation Fund announced that it has committed $900,000 over the next three years in the fight to save the critically endangered North Atlantic Right Whale.  The announcement was made by Dr. Michael Moore of the Woods...

Unless warming is slowed, emperor penguins will be marching towards extinction

November 7, 2019

Emperor penguins are some of the most striking and charismatic animals on Earth, but a new study from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) has found that a warming climate may render them extinct by the end of this century....

Admiral John Richardson

Admiral John Richardson joins WHOI Board of Trustees

October 30, 2019

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is pleased to announce that Admiral John Richardson recently joined the WHOI Board of Trustees. Richardson, a four-star admiral in the United States Navy, retired from his position as the 31st Chief of Naval Operations...

Sunlight degrades polystyrene faster than expected

October 10, 2019

A study published by researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) shows that polystyrene, one of the world’s most ubiquitous plastics, may degrade in decades or centuries when exposed to sunlight, rather than thousands of years as previously thought. The...

NOAA awards WHOI $2.9 million for harmful algal bloom research

October 3, 2019

NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) recently announced funding for 12 new research projects around the country to better understand and predict harmful algal blooms (HABs) and improve our collective response to them. Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI)...

Researchers use drones to weigh whales

October 2, 2019

A drone captues footage of a southern right whale and her calf. Courtesy Fredrik Christiansen, Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies, taken under research permits.   How do you weigh a living whale?  The obvious response is very carefully, but scientists...

Corals

New study measures how much of corals’ nutrition comes from hunting

September 17, 2019

A polyp of the smooth cauliflower coral (Stylophora pistillata), uses the stinging cells in its tentacles to capture a small shrimp, which is then pulled into the mouth of the polyp and digested. Coral colonies contain thousands of individual polyps...

New report takes in-depth look at factors contributing to sea level rise

September 12, 2019

Sea levels in many areas across the global ocean are rising. Since the turn of the 20th century, the seas have risen between six and eight inches globally. A new report from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) discusses some of...

Origin of Massive Methane Reservoir Identified

August 20, 2019

New research from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) published Aug. 19, 2019,  in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science provides evidence of the formation and abundance of abiotic methane—methane formed by chemical reactions that don’t involve organic matter—on...

Blue shark

Blue sharks use eddies for fast track to food

August 7, 2019

Researchers tagged more than a dozen blue sharks off the U.S. Northeast Coast and monitored them for nine months. (Video by Camrin Braun, University of Washington and Tane Sinclair-Taylor, James Cook University.)   Blue sharks use large, swirling ocean currents,...

Basking shark

SharkCam reveals secret lives of basking sharks in UK

August 6, 2019

Underwater footage captured by the REMUS SharkCam observing the behavior of basking sharks off the west coast of Scotland. (Credit: Amy Kukulya, @oceanrobotcam, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution) An autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) known as the REMUS SharkCam has been used...

NASA Makes Dual Investment in Ocean Worlds Research at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

June 21, 2019

Agency funds five-year effort to understand the potential for life in outer solar system and establishes a new Network for Ocean Worlds The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) will invest in a major new research program headquartered at the...

Study Finds No Direct Link Between North Atlantic Ocean Currents, Sea Level Along New England Coast

June 14, 2019

A new study by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) clarifies what influence major currents in the North Atlantic have on sea level along the northeastern United States. The study, published June 13 in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, examined both...

The mixing of organic-rich and sediment-rich waters of the Rio Negro and Solimoes River in the amazon basin.

Organic Carbon Hides in Sediments, Keeping Oxygen in Atmosphere

June 12, 2019

A new study from researchers at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and Harvard University may help settle a long-standing question—how small amounts of organic carbon become locked away in rock and sediments, preventing it from decomposing. Knowing exactly how...

An illustration of an organism infected with the giant virus known as Mimivirus. Credit: Shutterstock

Surprising Enzymes Found in Giant Ocean Viruses

June 5, 2019

Findings could represent new drug targets for human pathogens A new study led by researchers at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) and Swansea University Medical School furthers our knowledge of viruses—in the sea and on land— and their potential to...