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Is Coco’s a Paradise Lost? Costa Rica exports endangered Hammerhead Sharks

Contributions by Courtney Mattison of Mission Blue    Three hundred forty two miles west of mainland Costa Rica lies an oceanic island so spectacular Jacques Cousteau called it the “most beautiful island in the world.” Cascading waterfalls cut through lush foliage, the symphony of a thousand seabirds fill the sky, and the surrounding deep waters host…

R4WO Invited To The United Nations To Discuss Marine Plastic Pollution

The R4WO had a lot on its plate in the Big Apple in order to keep on passing the message about the urgency to act for our oceans. Litter is found in all the world’s oceans and seas and concerns are growing about impacts of marine litter on ecosystem health, biodiversity and human health. For this reason,…

Creating a ‘Lei of Hope’ for the World’s Oceans

Oceans are not too big to fail, says National Geographic Explorer Sylvia Earle. Can one boat’s journey send that message?

Swimming Among Pilot Whales in the Far North

We are not yet in Greenland, nor are we near Canada. We’re right smack dab in the middle of Davis Straight. The water is nearly 9,000 feet deep and I’m suited up like an astronaut.

Tracking a Group of Groupers

Guest post by Kristine Stump, postdoctoral research associate, Shedd Aquarium The beautiful and iconic Nassau Grouper was once one of the most important fishery species in the wider Caribbean, but due to heavy over exploitation is now scarce in many coral reef ecosystems throughout its native region. As mesopredators, groupers play a vital role in maintaining…

The Global Reef Expedition: Palau

The coral reefs of Palau hold approximately 400 species of hard corals, 300 species of soft corals, and 1400 species of reef fish. Palau is internationally renown for its beautiful landscapes and seascapes as well as its biological significance to the environment. The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation undertook its third expedition with the International League of Conservation Photographers in this fabled archipelago, working with iLCP Fellow Keith Ellenbogen.

Peace Boat passengers consider the cost of shark fin soup

With his orange life vest tightly fastened and carrying a plastic water gun, 6-year-old Murakami Yoshinao climbed down the motorboat’s fibreglass steps and plopped into the sea below. The water sloshed around Yoshinao’s shoulders and shadows moved across the bone coloured sand near his feet. Then the blacktip sharks came closer – one glided right…

Pictures: Hippo Struggles to Escape Ocean Surf

Residents of Ponta do Ouro in Mozambique were shocked to find a hippopotamus apparently struggling in the ocean surf in front of the beach town earlier this month. The giant mammal, which can weigh two or three tons, is certainly no stranger to water, living much of its life in Africa’s rivers and lakes. But while hippos have been known to stray into the sea in Gabon, it’s a very rare occurrence in southern Africa

Where Is a Lion a Shark? In the Savannas of the Sea

Mtumbwi hauwezi kujua panapokuwa pamejaa maji. (Swahili) The dugout canoe does not know the depth of the water. (English) So believe the Hangaza, an ethnic group living along Lake Victoria near Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park. The lake has long been an object of contemplation for the Hangaza. They know that animals like crocodiles swim just beneath…

Rowing the Pacific With Wine and Cheese

Row the Pacific Ocean with French cousins Christophe and Clemente in this video, and contribute to ocean conservation while you’re at it. Just don’t get seasick!

14 Ocean Conservation Wins of 2014

Chances are you’ve come across some ocean news lately. And it may even have been positive! Yes, the ocean is still in serious trouble due to overfishing, pollution, climate change, and habitat destruction, but there are more and more success stories to point to, and point I shall. #1. Big year for big marine reserves. Kiribati,…

10 Hidden Gems From a Year in Exploration

With National Geographic explorers sharing more than 350 stories from the field this year, chances are you missed a few. Here are some lost treasures we hope you’ll enjoy.

My Top Ten U.S. Ocean Stories of 2014

Given the cascading disasters the ocean faces from industrial overfishing, pollution, coastal sprawl and climate change there’s been some surprisingly good news in the United States this year. Here are ten stories – both good and bad – that impacted the blue in our red, white and blue. Pacific Monument Expanded President Obama expanded the…

Journeying Oregon’s New Marine Reserves by Bike: Cascade Head

By Chris Rurik and Helen Helfand Part 1   Part 2   Part 3   Part 4   Part 5 Terry Thompson finds us in a parking lot in Lincoln City. After traversing this strip of a town all morning, looking for signs of the marine reserve just offshore, we have ended up outside the uninspiring four-story city…

Explorers’ Hearts Full This Thanksgiving

National Geographic explorers kicked off their Thanksgiving celebrations by sharing with us some of the things they are grateful for. From nightly raccoon visits to the smell of the ocean, our explorers continue to remind us to cherish the earth and celebrate the world around us.