Oceanography News -- ScienceDaily Oceanography news. Learn about ocean currents, coastal erosion, sea level rising and other topics in physical oceanography.

  • Life goes on for marine ecosystems after cataclysmic mass extinction
    on October 20, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    One of the largest global mass extinctions did not fundamentally change marine ecosystems, scientists have found. […]

  • Climate shifts shorten marine food chain off California
    on October 19, 2017 at 9:16 pm

    Environmental disturbances such as El Niño shake up the marine food web off Southern California, new research shows, countering conventional thinking that the hierarchy of who-eats-who in the ocean remains largely constant over time. […]

  • Maintaining fish biomass the key to conserving reef fish biodiversity
    on October 19, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    A new study has found that conserving fish diversity in Madagascar's coral reef systems may depend on maintaining fish biomass above critical levels. […]

  • Scientists see order in complex patterns of river deltas
    on October 19, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    River deltas, with their intricate networks of waterways, coastal barrier islands, wetlands and estuaries, often appear to have been formed by random processes, but scientists see order in the apparent chaos. […]

  • Fossil coral reefs show sea level rose in bursts during last warming
    on October 19, 2017 at 2:09 pm

    Scientists have discovered that Earth's sea level did not rise steadily when the planet's glaciers last melted during a period of global warming; rather, sea level rose sharply in punctuated bursts. […]

  • Ice stream retreats under a cold climate
    on October 19, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    Warmer ocean surface triggered the ice retreat during The Younger Dryas. […]

  • Keratin, proteins from 54-million-year-old sea turtle show survival trait evolution
    on October 17, 2017 at 1:18 pm

    Researchers have retrieved original pigment, beta-keratin and muscle proteins from a 54-million-year-old sea turtle hatchling. The work adds to the growing body of evidence supporting persistence of original molecules over millions of years and also provides direct evidence that a pigment-based survival trait common to modern sea turtles evolved at least 54 million years ago. […]

  • Waves in lakes make waves in the Earth
    on October 16, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Scientists report that small seismic signals in lakes can aid science. As a record of wave motion in a lake, they can reveal when a lake freezes over and when it thaws. And as a small, constant source of seismic energy in the surrounding earth, lake microseisms can shine a light on the geology surrounding a lake. […]

  • Giant sea bass worth more alive as undersea wonders than as commercial catch
    on October 14, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    An investigation of the different economic values of giant sea bass finds they are worth more alive as undersea wonders than as commercial catch. […]

  • Melting ice makes the sea around Greenland less saline
    on October 13, 2017 at 3:30 pm

    For the first time, ocean data from Northeast Greenland reveals the long-term impact of the melting of the Greenland ice sheet. The observed increase in freshwater content will affect the conditions in all Greenland fjords and may ultimately affect the global ocean currents that keep Europe warm. […]

  • Baltic clams, worms release as much greenhouse gas as 20,000 dairy cows
    on October 13, 2017 at 1:10 pm

    Ocean clams and worms are releasing a significant amount of potentially harmful greenhouse gas into the atmosphere, scientists have shown. […]

  • Warming seas could lead to 70 percent increase in hurricane-related financial loss
    on October 12, 2017 at 7:18 pm

    Hurricane-related financial loss could increase more than 70 percent by 2100 if oceans warm at the worst-case-scenario rate predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, according to a new study. The study used a combination of hurricane modeling and information in FEMA's HAZUS database to reach its conclusions. […]

  • Geologic evidence is the forerunner of ominous prospects for a warming Earth
    on October 12, 2017 at 3:48 pm

    While strong seasonal hurricanes have devastated many of the Caribbean and Bahamian islands this year, geologic studies on several of these islands illustrate that more extreme conditions existed in the past. A new analysis shows that the limestone islands of the Bahamas and Bermuda experienced climate changes that were even more extreme than historical events. […]

  • Risk of tsunamis in Mediterranean Sea has been overstated, say experts
    on October 11, 2017 at 6:48 pm

    A review of geological evidence for tsunamis during the past 4500 years in the Mediterranean Sea has revealed that as many as 90 per cent of these inundation events may have been misinterpreted by scientists and were due to storm activity instead. […]

  • Marine snowfall at the equator
    on October 10, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    Animal excrements and parts of dead organisms constantly sink from the surface of the oceans towards the deep sea. This particle flow plays an important role in the global carbon cycle and consequently for the climate. Little is known so far about its distribution in the water column. An international research team has now published a detailed image of the distribution of the marine snowfall in the equatorial ocean. […]

  • Huge energy potential in open ocean wind farms in the North Atlantic
    on October 9, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    Because wind speeds are higher on average over ocean than over land, wind turbines in the open ocean could in theory intercept more than five times as much energy as wind turbines over land. This presents an enticing opportunity for generating renewable energy through wind turbines. But it was unknown whether the faster ocean winds could actually be converted to increased amounts of electricity. […]

  • Mars study yields clues to possible cradle of life
    on October 6, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    The discovery of evidence for ancient sea-floor hydrothermal deposits on Mars identifies an area on the planet that may offer clues about the origin of life on Earth. The research offers evidence that these deposits were formed by heated water from a volcanically active part of the planet's crust entering the bottom of a large sea long ago. […]

  • 12,000 years ago, Florida hurricanes heated up despite chilly seas
    on October 5, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    Category 5 hurricanes may have slammed Florida repeatedly during the chilly Younger Dryas, 12,000 years ago. The cause? Hurricane-suppressing effects of cooler sea surface were out-weighed by side effects of slowed ocean circulation. […]

  • Ancient humans left Africa to escape drying climate
    on October 4, 2017 at 7:12 pm

    Humans migrated out of Africa as the climate shifted from wet to dry about 60,000 years ago, according to new paleoclimate research. What the northeast Africa climate was like when people migrated from Africa into Eurasia between 70,000 and 55,000 years ago is still uncertain. The new research shows around 70,000 years ago, the Horn of Africa climate shifted from a wet phase called 'Green Sahara' to even drier than the region is now. […]

  • Fish shrinking as ocean temperatures rise
    on October 4, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    One of the most economically important fish is shrinking in body weight, length and overall physical size as ocean temperatures rise, according to new research by LSU Boyd Professor R. Eugene Turner published today. The average body size of Menhaden -- a small, silver fish -- caught off the coasts from Maine to Texas -- has shrunk by about 15 percent over the past 65 years. […]

  • New light shed on Earth's history
    on October 3, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    New research suggests that hydrogen, oxygen, water and carbon dioxide are being generated in the earth's mantle hundreds of kilometers below the earth's surface. […]

  • Large volcanic eruptions in Tropics can trigger El Niño events
    on October 3, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    Explosive volcanic eruptions in the tropics can lead to El Niño events, those notorious warming periods in the Pacific Ocean with dramatic global impacts on the climate, according to a new study. […]

  • New source of radioactivity from Fukushima disaster
    on October 2, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    Scientists have found a previously unsuspected place where radioactive material from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant disaster has accumulated -- in sands and brackish groundwater beneath beaches up to 60 miles away. The sands took up and retained radioactive cesium originating from the disaster in 2011 and have been slowly releasing it back to the ocean. […]

  • Antarctica: Return of the Weddell polynya supports Kiel climate model
    on September 29, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    Currently, winter has still a firm grip on Antarctica. At this time of the year, the Weddell Sea usually is covered with a thick layer of sea ice. In spite of the icy temperatures in the region, satellite images depict a large ice-free area in the middle of the ice cover. […]

  • Tsunami enabled hundreds of aquatic species to raft across Pacific
    on September 28, 2017 at 6:21 pm

    The 2011 Japanese tsunami set the stage for something unprecedented. For the first time in recorded history, scientists have detected entire communities of coastal species crossing the ocean by floating on makeshift rafts. Nearly 300 species have appeared on the shores of Hawaii and the US West Coast attached to tsunami debris, marine biologists discovered. […]

  • Did rapid sea-level rise drown fossil coral reefs around Hawaii?
    on September 28, 2017 at 1:42 pm

    Investigations to predict changes in sea levels and their impacts on coastal systems are a step closer, as a result of a new international collaboration. […]

  • Examining the lifestyles of microbes
    on September 27, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Scientists are studying microbes called Parcubacteria that were found by James Cameron (director of 'Terminator') during a recent deep sea expedition. They want to study the microbes' lifestyle and see how similar they are to those found on land. […]

  • New iceberg calved from Pine Island Glacier
    on September 27, 2017 at 2:45 pm

    A new iceberg calved from Pine Island Glacier -- one of the main outlets where ice from the interior of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet flows into the ocean. […]

  • Lost continent of Zealandia: Scientists return from expedition to sunken land
    on September 27, 2017 at 3:59 am

    After a nine-week voyage to study the lost, submerged continent of in the South Pacific, a team of 32 scientists from 12 countries has arrived in Hobart, Tasmania, aboard the research vessel JOIDES Resolution. […]

  • Some marine species more vulnerable to climate change than others
    on September 26, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    Certain marine species will fare much worse than others as they become more vulnerable to the effects of climate change, a new study has found. […]