How do sea otters stay warm in such chilly waters off the Pacific coast? Well, sea otter fur is the densest of any animal on Earth—an estimated 1 million hairs per square inch. That's because, unlike their fellow marine mammals, sea otters have no blubber to keep warm, so they must compensate with some super-thick fur coats. Unfortunately, humans hunted them for theses pelts, which is why the otters are extinct on the Oregon coast (although Oregon Shores is part of a coalition working to bring them back).(PC: @oregoncoastaquarium ) #OregonEcology
One of the most exciting animal encounters I've ever enjoyed happened in Gaansbai, South Africa. Great white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) have always fascinated me, so getting into that cage was a weird lifelong dream come true! 🦈
The experience is amazing and a bit crazy: you are more or less holding onto something with a hand while trying to take photos with the other hand and, sometimes, with the movement of the waves, your legs go out in between the bars! 🦈
Today I was chatting about sharks and the pros and cons of this kind of tourism with @melissacristinamarquez, when she told me something that blew my mind!
Apparently, sharks in South Africa are leaving the neighborhood, because some scary mammals are HUNTING them!
And no, for once, these mammals are not humans... They belong to the dolphin family! Orcas!!
And why are orcas chasing sharks?! You won't believe it... They hunt them for their livers! 🦈
Shark livers are huge energy storages, fueling the sharks' long migrations. These livers are also full of vitamins, so it's not entirely surprising that orcas in the area have started considering these organs a delicacy. 🦈
And the best part of the story is how they steal those organs!!
Orcas (Orcinus orca) are larger and more powerful than sharks, but they are not mindless brutes. Orcas use the same trick that marine scientists use to study sharks. They take advantage of something called "tonic immobility", a natural paralysis reflex that sharks experience when they are turned around, with their ventral side up. 🦈
South African orcas have learnt that they can ram a shark, put him belly up, and basically anesthesize him whilst surgically removing their liver!
We came from the sea and we will return to it someday 🌊 🐙🐈🐠🐟🐬. Aquaman highlighted one important value to us. Land and Sea is one🌏. We should be mindful of how we manage our land waste because what goes into the sea, will come back to us someday. Just like why the Atlantean dislikes the surface dwellers that polluted the ocean.
This is also what @reefstakes hope to achieve, more people will be aware of their own actions that may harm the ocean through our card game.
Fun fact: the team are totally 😍 with Jason Mamoa @prideofgypsies because like us, he also has Marine biology background.
Is it just me or does it look like this Turtle is sticking his finger up?! @underwater 🐢
Say no to #singleuseplastic
For more 👉 Follow us! 👉 @iphotographunderwater
Thank you so much 👌🏻👌🏻
One week until Christmas. Let's talk about Christmas tree worms! It is clear how these worms got their name. Their brightly colored spirals resemble Christmas trees and are only one part of the animal. The other part is buried in coral reef. The bristles are specialized features for feeding and respiration. The worms exist in many different bright colors and are popular amongst divers. Naturalis investigates their genetic relationships.
Other Naturalis research focuses on their ecology. The worms erode coral by burying inside (bio-erosion). The worms are being counted to investigate how bio-erosion, higher amounts of nutrients near the coast line interact.
Photo by Hansgertbroeder / iStock / Getty images plus
How long can YOU hold your breath ?
Here, one of Cape RADD’s marine biologists @dylanirion is demonstrating how we use freediving skills for data collection in the kelp forests. Observing, counting and recording fish and shark numbers inside and outside the coastal marine protected areas along the cape peninsula.
Finished this narwhal family painting on driftwood. Love these magical creatures. Did you know their tusk (or tooth) can grow up to 10 feet long, spirals to the left, and can bend up to a foot before breaking? And not all narwhals have tusks either. Only the males and 15% of females have them. ✨#beachbling