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Ocean Watch


Stone money and gobies in Palau and Yap

Updated on  March 9, 2018 at 10:13 pm
With about 2,000 species, gobies form the largest fish family in the world. Read More

Yap’s unique stone money acts as hard currency

Updated on  March 2, 2018 at 10:10 pm
Besides meeting some of the friendliest people on the planet here, it’s the only place where money is as big as manta rays. Read More

Soft Coral Arch revives childhood memories

Updated on  February 23, 2018 at 10:47 pm
Rather than a hard skeleton, these soft coral types have inside their liquid stalks tiny calcium carbonate sticks and stones that help them stand up. Read More

Coral reefs in Palau are national treasures

Updated on  February 16, 2018 at 9:47 pm
Palau’s corals are getting attention for their ability to thrive in warm, acidic water, factors that are killing corals in other parts of the world. Read More

Breathing gets bubbly while crabs are on land

Crabs that spend part of their lives in the water, and part out, can blow bubbles. This foaming-at-the-mouth might look like the crab is in distress, and sometimes it is, but in healthy crabs, mouth bubbling comes from the crab breathing air instead of water. Read More

Clinger crabs are members of wind drift community

Updated on  February 2, 2018 at 9:58 pm
Clinger crabs are about the size of a quarter and come in shades of blue or brown, depending on which object they’ve chosen to call home. Read More

Midway beach becomes wall-to-wall sea turtles

Updated on  January 26, 2018 at 9:37 pm
During my albatross work at Midway two years ago, I watched several 200-or-so-pound turtles dig their front fins into the sand and lurch up the beach, one laborious step at a time. I felt exhausted just watching. Read More

Good deed brings rare glimpse of sea horse

Updated on  January 19, 2018 at 9:56 pm
The sea horse is a Hawaii native. The smooth sea horse’s scientific name is Hippocampus kuda. Read More

Green turtles’ numbers are growing at Midway

Updated on  January 12, 2018 at 9:18 pm
Midway is famous for hosting the largest albatross colony in the world, but it’s also become a place to admire sea turtles. Read More

Distinct isle anemones stow their okole at aquarium

In light of all the time I spend snorkeling and reading about marine life, you might think that the aquarium wouldn’t hold any surprises for me. But wait, what’s this? On exhibit is an anemone, called Mann’s anemone, found only in Hawaii that I didn’t know existed. Read More

Isles host 20 species of native spider crab

Updated on  December 29, 2017 at 10:23 pm
Year-end highlights or summaries aren’t my favorite reading material because the articles mostly contain facts about things I already know. Read More

Isolated Midway still has creature comforts

Updated on  December 23, 2017 at 12:56 am
When I mentioned that Craig and I were going to work at Midway counting albatrosses over the holidays, the questions people asked made me realize that few people know anything about the place. Read More

Laysan albatross joins birds visiting isles for the holidays

Updated on  December 15, 2017 at 9:53 pm
Here on Oahu, the holidays are for the birds — shorebirds and seabirds, that is. In November, we plover lovers added to our list of thanks the first-ever-seen white (called leucistic) kolea, spotted foraging at Heeia Pier. Read More

White terns enjoy growth with the help of humans

Updated on  December 8, 2017 at 10:04 pm
For the second year in a row, Honolulu’s white terns (the official name for what we once called fairy terns or angel terns) are having a banner year. Read More

It’s the time for ‘wedgies’ to be leaving their burrows

Updated on  December 2, 2017 at 12:11 am
Happening right now with wedge-tailed shearwaters on Oahu, moms, dads and fledgling chicks are leaving their underground hideaways to ride the wind above the waves. Read More

Minuscule ‘water bears’ are uncanny survivors

Updated on  November 17, 2017 at 10:09 pm
Water bears have survived temperatures as high as 300 degrees Fahrenheit and as low as minus 456 degrees. The animals have also lived through vacuums, intense radiationand zero oxygen. Read More

Bleaching isn’t always death knell for corals

Updated on  November 10, 2017 at 10:12 pm
Some corals are adapting to higher water temperatures and doing just fine. Perhaps, as human and wildlife suffering escalates worldwide, our species will evolve to become less selfish. Read More

Spiral float is unique to 1 species of cuttlefish

Updated on  November 3, 2017 at 10:51 pm
I’m home from Australia after several outstanding voyages to the outer reefs of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. Read More

Sea snakes seen sunning amid Great Barrier Reef

Updated on  October 28, 2017 at 9:12 am
I know I’ll never convince people who fear snakes that they’re fun snorkeling companions. But even those with phobias might appreciate seeing, from the deck of a boat, a rare marine animal in its natural element. Read More

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