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By Morgane Bouvet, Seamounts Intern Many of our blogs are now available for listening! Tune in weekly for the audio experience. On the bottom of the deep ocean lie seamounts, massive underwater volcanoes that are largely unexplored, and generally absent of marine protections or management. Most seamounts are located in areas beyond national jurisdiction; also…

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Featured image: An orange basket star covers a Picasso sponge at Davidson Seamount, California. Image courtesy of NOAA and MBARI. The deep sea harbors the greatest number of species and ecosystems on Earth. Within this vast realm, the dazzling submerged volcanoes called seamounts are among the most diverse places of all. Scientists have long recognized that…

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Seamounts are massive underwater volcanoes that occur across the planet. They attract and support large numbers of animals including fish, sharks, sea turtles, seabirds, and marine mammals at the surface and shelter an incredible array of deep-sea life, including cold-water corals and sponges that build crucial structures, or ‘homes’, for large amounts of marine life on the bottom. These habitats are the ‘old-growth forests’ of the ocean – they are long-lived, slow growing, and extremely slow to recover following disturbance from activities like bottom trawling or seabed mining. Of the 10,000 plus seamounts known to exist, only around 10% are protected from some type of destruction. Marine Conservation Institute has a campaign to protect the 60 seamounts off the coast of California and is working with partners to protect many more around the world.

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Featured Pic: The Exploration Vessel (E/V) Nautilus. Photo courtesy of Ocean Exploration Trust. By Samuel Georgian, Marine Biogeographer at Marine Conservation Institute On August 25th, Marine Conservation Institute staff scientist Samuel Georgian will join a 22 day-long deep-sea research expedition onboard the E/V Nautilus. The cruise is collaborative effort with scientists and support from a wide array…

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By Nikki Harasta, Marine Conservation Institute Science Intern   Sharks are incredibly important components of many different marine ecosystems. Unfortunately, sharks often enter our consciousness only when a shark attack on a beachgoer makes the news. Take a closer look at the numbers however, and you’ll see that they’ve been given a bad rap. The…

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By Michael Gravitz, Director of Policy & Legislation at Marine Conservation Institute   People often ask us how the oceans are doing and whether things are getting better or worse for them. It’s natural to get that question a lot around International Oceans Day, June 8th, when there is more attention in the media about all…

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Feature Pic: Elias Levy World leaders may soon make history for ocean wildlife. After more than a decade of halting progress, a UN Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) is convening for the next 10 days to negotiate a treaty to protect biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ), also known as the high seas. An agreement would…

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Today, let’s celebrate the progress that has been made to protect our oceans. The world has come a long way and, though more work is needed to reach conservation targets and ensure long-term ocean health, momentum is on our side. With groups like Sin Azul No Hay Verde and heads of state at major conferences advancing…

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OCEANS, OCEANS, OCEANS. Can anyone remember three weeks with as much progress in protecting the world’s oceans and marine biodiversity as the last three weeks?  I can’t. First, President Obama created the largest protected area on EARTH when he expanded the marine monument known as Papahānaumokuākea in the NW Hawaiian Islands to be three and…

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