Citizen Science, MPAs and Deep-Ocean Mining

Written by on March 14, 2013 in Marine Life

Daily Summary

Scuba divers.

Scuba divers. Photo credit: NOAA.

Marine diversity study proves value of citizen science

New research from the University of East Anglia reveals that when monitoring species biodiversity, citizen science surveys are just as effective as traditional scientific methods. In this study, average scuba divers actually found more species (137) around the site than professional divers using a belt transect (106).

Two New Marine Protected Areas Created on Argentina’s Southern Coasts

The National Congress in Argentina has created two new marine protected areas in Patagonia: Isla Pingüino Coastal Marine Park and Makenke Coastal Marine Park. These enormous MPAs will help protect a number of important species, including sea lions, penguins, dolphins and more. Isla Pingüino contains one of the only remaining colonies of rockhopper penguins on the coast of Patagonia and Makenke Coastal Marine Park is home to the largest colony of the rare red-legged cormorants in the country.

Red-legged cormorant.

Red-legged cormorant. Photo credit: Mikelzubi.

UK Seabed Resources joins deep-ocean mineral-mining rush

UK Seabed Resources has plans for a large prospecting operation in the Pacific after surveys revealed huge numbers of valuable metal-rich nodules lying on the ocean floor. They have scheduled an expedition to assess the impact of extracting these nodules for this summer. The area they are exploring is twice the size of Wales, 4000m below the surface.

Whales filter feed with a tangled hair-like net

A new study reveals that filter-feeding whales have a unique hair-like net that traps food. The net forms as the fringed edges of the baleen float around and get tangled up. The researchers found that at different speeds the effectiveness of the net changed. Until now, most people believed that baleen didn’t really move. This research proves otherwise and adds to the complexity of whale feeding patterns.

Here you can see baleen in a North Atlantic Right Whale.

Here you can see baleen in a North Atlantic Right Whale. Photo credit: NOAA.

Copyright © 2013 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.

About the Author

About the Author: Emily Tripp is the Publisher and Editor of MarineScienceToday.com. She holds marine science and biology degrees from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Master of Advanced Studies degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. When she's not writing about marine science, she's probably running around outside or playing with her dog. .

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