Barnacleis a hardy animal that is found in or very closely to sea water. Although it is frequently confused for a mollusc because of its hard outer shell, it is actually a crustacean, closely related to crabs and lobsters.
Blowfish are part of the Tetraodontidae family and are found in tropical waters near the coastal areas or deep within the sea. There are more than 100 species of blowfish, which grow on average from 3 to 20 inches long, though some species may reach 3 feet. Blowfish are lethal to humans, as they contain tetrodotoxin and/or saxitoxin. As of April 2010, there is no known antidote for the toxin of the blowfish.
Bristlemouths are well camouflaged. When deep sea animals look up toward the ocean’s surface, they see other animals overhead as dark shapes against a lighter background. But by lighting two rows of photophores on its underside, this deep sea fish avoids casting its shadow on predators below––and can virtually disappear.
Lined Chiton is a very colorful species, having blue, purple or black straight or zigzag lines on each of the eight valves. The background color of the valves is often brown or red, but can also be bright blue or yellow to orange. The girdle is hairless and brown to red or pink, often with regular yellow or white patches. This species grows to 5 cm in length.
Clams are found in the coastal waters of the sea and in shallow freshwater lakes and streams. Many clams are edible, and “clambake” picnics are popular along the Atlantic coast of the United States and Canada. Clams are also used as fish bait, and their shells can be made into buttons. The shells were also sometimes used by American Indians to make wampum.
Coral reef is one of the most diverse ecosystems on our planet. The sheer number of life forms on the reef rivals even that of the tropical rain forests. Built over thousands of years by tiny calcium-producing organisms, the reefs are a haven for countless thousands of life forms, some of which seem totally alien in form. It is a fairy tale world of bright colors and ever changing patterns.
Cuttlefish is found in tropical and temperate seas. It has an oval body, somewhat flattened. The common cuttlefish (also called the common sepia) is 6 to 10 inches (15 to 25 cm) long and ranges in color from light gray to dark brown. Some species are much larger, attaining a length of more than two feet (60 cm). A thin flap of skin like a frilled fin runs along each side. There are two prominent eyes. The mouth is surrounded by eight arms and two longer tentacles that bear suckers, used to catch prey (fish and crustaceans) or attach the animal to some object.
Dolphins are beautiful creatures that are fun to watch. A dolphin is one of the most intelligent animals in the world. Dolphin’s First Day is a delightful story of a bottlenose dolphin. I owned this book for years and didn’t read it until now – that was silly, it’s a very good book.
Dugong is a mammal, that is, it suckles its young. Dugong may reach 3m in length and weigh almost 500 kgs. They have a thick layer of fat giving them a distinctly rotund posture, small paddle-like flippers positioned far forward on the body and a broad, flattened, powerful tail that resembles the tail of whale.
Eels are an order of fish, which consists of four suborders, 20 families, 111 genera and approximately 800 species. Most eels are predators. The term “eel” is also used for some other similarly shaped fish, such as electric eels and spiny eels, but these are not members of the Anguilliformes order.
Flashlight Fish are a family, the Anomalopidae, of beryciform fish. There are some unrelated fish with similar features, some of which are also called flashlight fish. Notable among these are the deep sea lanternfish, of the family Myctophidae, of which there are over 200 species.
Jellyfish are members of the phylum Cnidaria, a structurally simple marine group of both fixed and mobile animals: sea anemones, sea whips, corals and hydroids are polyps that grow attached to rocks or other hard surfaces; jellyfish and colonial siphonophores like the Portuguese man-of-war are mobile (either actively swimming or subject to winds and currents). Inherent to both types of life history is their radial symmetry (body parts radiating from a central axis). This symmetry allows jellyfish to detect and respond to food or danger from any direction.
Lanternfish are known as non-guarding pelagic spawners. This means that the females release their eggs into the water column as a group where they are then fertilized externally by the males. Depending on the species, between 100 and 2,000 eggs are released by each fish. Spawning is believed to occur year around in most species. Once the eggs hatch, the young larvae have a small number of photophores for producing light. They are left to fend for themselves until they reach maturity. Lanternfish are so plentiful it is thought that their larvae may account for nearly 50% of all fish larvae found in the ocean.
Lobsters are caught in both Atlantic and Pacific waters. They are often marketed alive, but their meat is also available frozen or canned. There are several kinds of lobsters; the most important commercially are the American lobster and various species of spiny lobsters. (Spiny lobsters are also known as rock lobsters and marine crayfish.
Manatees are large, fully aquatic, mostly herbivorous marine mammals sometimes known as sea cows. There are three accepted living species of Trichechidae, representing three of the four living species in the order Sirenia: the Amazonian manatee (Trichechus inunguis), the West Indian manatee (Trichechus manatus), and the West African manatee (Trichechus senegalensis). They measure up to 13 feet (4.0 m) long, weigh as much as 1,300 pounds (590 kg), and have paddle-like flippers. The name manat? comes from the Ta?no, a pre-Columbian people of the Caribbean, meaning “breast”.
Mussels are bivalves, animals whose bodies are enclosed between two hinged shells. Freshwater and saltwater species thrive worldwide. The two most common species in the Pacific Northwest are the smooth-shelled blue mussel and the ribbed-shelled California mussel. These species do coexist, but generally, the blue mussel prefers protected waters while the California mussel favors the pounding surf of exposed coastal waters. The California mussel, with a shell up to 10 inches in size, grows larger than the blue,whose shell rarely grows to six inches.
Nautilus is the largest and most common of about six species known to exist. Like the coelacanth, it has remained unchanged for over 400 million years. During prehistoric times, there were about 10,000 different species of nautilus, but only a small handful are known to survive today. The nautilus is a mollusk and a member of the cephalopod family. It is closely related to other cephalopods such as the squid, cuttlefish, and octopus. Like most cephalopods, it can use jet propulsion to attain speeds of over two knots. A small tube near the animal’s tentacles, known as a siphon, expels water under pressure. This propels the nautilus in the opposite direction at high speeds.
Octopusis a cephalopod mollusc of the order Octopoda. Octopuses have two eyes and four pairs of arms, and like other cephalopods they are bilaterally symmetric. An octopus has a hard beak, with its mouth at the center point of the arms. Octopuses have no internal or external skeleton (although some species have a vestigial remnant of a shell inside their mantle), allowing them to squeeze through tight places. Octopuses are among the most intelligent and behaviorally flexible of all invertebrates.
Oyster is used as a common name for a number of distinct groups of bivalve molluscs which live in marine or brackish habitats. The valves are highly calcified. Some kinds of oyster are commonly consumed, cooked or raw, by humans. These are considered an aphrodisiac. Other kinds, such as pearl oysters, are not eaten by humans, though they are edible.
Pipefish is also known as Syngnathinae. Pipe fish belongs to the subfamily of small fishes like seahorses. Pipefishes likes to parenting with the seahorse family the duties is done by the male pipefish of the family. The operation is planned before itself and will be executed in time. Pair bonding is present in new varieties of Pipefishes.
Plankton is the term that generally refers to the “floaters,” the organisms in the ocean that drift with the currents. This includes the algae, zooplankton (“animal plankton”), phytoplankton (plankton that are capable of photosynthesis), and bacteria.
Porcupine fishare nocturnal, carnivorous predators specialized in eating hard-shelled prey. Their strong beak-like mouth is used to seize and crush prey such as urchins, crabs, snails and clams. Like many animals that eat hard or prickly prey, porcupinefish also posess thick, rubbery lips to protect them from being injured by the spines and broken shells of the prey they eat. At night, porcupinefish can be observed actively combing the reef for food and investigating sandy areas, crevices and caves where their prey might be found.
Puffer fish is a medium-sized species of fish that inhabits warmer, coastal waters around the world. The puffer fish is most well known for it’s unique and distinctive adaptations that the puffer fish has to defend itself.
Scallop is a marine bivalve mollusk of the family Pectinidae. Scallops are a cosmopolitan family, found in all of the world’s oceans. Many scallops are highly prized as a food source. The brightly colored, fan-shaped shells of some scallops, with their radiating fluted pattern, are valued by shell collectors and have been used as motifs in art and design.
Sea Anemoneis a stinger that lives almost its whole life as a polyp. Some sea anemones also go through a larva stage. sea anemone has a soft, muscular, cylinder-shaped stalk with a broad, circular foot at its base. Atop the stalk is a mouth surrounded by circular rows of hollow tentacles. The tentacles, which eject poisonous stinging threads to paralyze prey, grasp small animals and sweep them into the mouth.
Sea cucumbers are echinoderms—like starfish and sea urchins. There are some 1,250 known species, and many of these animals are indeed shaped like soft-bodied cucumbers. All sea cucumbers are ocean dwellers, though some inhabit the shallows and others live in the deep ocean. They live on or near the ocean floor—sometimes partially buried beneath it.
Sea Lion is built for the water, but, unlike the seal, it is also mobile on land. Streamlined bodies, strong flippers and an ability to regulate body temperature make the sea lion suited to its watery environment.
Sea Otter is a small marine mammal native to the north and eastern coasts of the Pacific Ocean. Despite the fact that sea otters are the largest members of the weasel family, sea otters are among the smallest mammals in the marine world.
Sea Turtles are reptiles. They are cold blooded animals; their body temperatures adjust to the temperature of the surrounding waters. They breathe through lungs and must swim to the surface to breathe. However, they can “hold their breath” for a long time. Some sea turtles have stayed under water for up to 5 hours. The “legs” of sea turtles are actually flippers, and they are very strong swimmers, using the front flippers to swim and the rear flippers to steer and balance. Unlike other turtles, the sea turtle cannot retract its flippers or head into its shell.
Sea Urchin is a prickly-looking echinoderm, spherical in shape and covered with long movable spines. Sea urchins have the longest spines of any echinoderm. Like sea stars, sea urchins have spines over much of their bodies. Their spines stick out in all directions from their bony plates—just like little spears. And these spines are often poisonous.
Sea Dragon is a small, delicate fish found in the tropical coastal waters of south and west Australia. Sea dragons look similar to and are in fact closely related to sea horses.
Seahorses are truly unique, and not just because of their unusual equine shape. Unlike most other fish, they are monogamous and mate for life. Rarer still, they are among the only animal species on Earth in which the male bears the unborn young.
Seals are marine mammals. The seal family includes the seal, sea lion and the walrus. A seal’s respiratory system is adapted for water. A seal can go for 40 minutes without a breath. This allows them to dive to a depth of over 2,000 feet.
Sharks are a group of fishes characterized by a cartilaginous skeleton, five to seven gill slits on the sides of the head, and pectoral fins that are not fused to the head. Modern sharks are classified within the clade Selachimorpha (or Selachii), and are the sister group to the rays. However, the term “shark” has also been used for extinct members of the suborder Elasmobranchii outside the Selachimorpha, such as Cladoselache and Xenacanthus. Under this broader definition, the earliest known sharks date from more than 420 million years ago
Shrimps are swimming, decapod crustaceans classified in the infraorder Caridea, found widely around the world in both fresh and salt water. Adult shrimp are filter feeding benthic animals living close to the bottom. They can live in schools and can swim rapidly backwards. Shrimp are an important food source for larger animals from fish to whales. They have a high tolerance to toxins in polluted areas, and may contribute to high toxin levels in their predators. Together with prawns, shrimp are widely caught and farmed for human consumption.
Snail is a common name which is applied to most of the members of the molluscan class Gastropoda that have coiled shells in the adult stage. When the word is used in its most general sense, it includes sea snails, land snails and freshwater snails. The word snail without any qualifier is however more often applied to land snails than to those from the sea or freshwater. Snail-like animals that naturally lack a shell, or have only an internal shell, are often called slugs, and land species that have only a very small shell (that they cannot retract into) are called semislugs.
Sponges are animals of the phylum Porifera. They are multicellular organisms which have bodies full of pores and channels allowing water to circulate through them, consisting of jelly-like mesohyl sandwiched between two thin layers of cells. Sponges have unspecialized cells that can transform into other types and which often migrate between the main cell layers and the mesohyl in the process. Sponges do not have nervous, digestive or circulatory systems. Instead, most rely on maintaining a constant water flow through their bodies to obtain food, oxygen and remove wastes.
Starfish are beautiful animals that can be a variety of colors, shapes and sizes, although all resemble a star. While some appear smooth, they all have spines covering their upper surface and a soft underside. If you gently turn over a live sea star, you’ll see its tube feet wiggling back at you. These iconic marine animals are fascinating creatures. Learn more about them below.
PacificWalrus are an important subsistence and cultural resource to many Alaska and Russian Native cultures. Walrus make up an important part of the diet of many coastal Alaska Natives. Byproducts are used to make authentic Native Alaskan handicrafts, as well as many of the items necessary to continue a subsistence lifestyle. Walrus hides are used for many proposes including covers for wooden boat frames and rope.
Whale is the common name for various marine mammals of the order Cetacea. The term whale sometimes refers to all cetaceans, but more often it excludes dolphins and porpoises, which belong to suborder Odontoceti (toothed whales). This suborder also includes the sperm whale, killer whale, pilot whale, and beluga whale. The other Cetacean suborder Mysticeti (baleen whales) are filter feeders that eat small organisms caught by straining seawater through a comblike structure found in the mouth called baleen. This suborder includes the blue whale, the humpback whale, the bowhead whale and the minke whale.