Marine biology mystery solvedLast Updated on 2013-05-20 14:48:13Function of 'unicorn' whale's 8-foot
tooth discovered by Harvard School of Dental Medicine researcher
Harvard School of Dental Medicine (HSDM) researcher Martin Nweeia has just answered a marine science question that had eluded the scientific community for hundreds of years: why does the narwhal, or "unicorn," whale have an 8-foot-long tooth emerging from its head, and what is its function? Nweeia, a clinical instructor in restorative dentistry and biomaterials sciences at HSDM, will be presenting his conclusions at the 16th Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals in San Diego.
The narwhal has a tooth, or tusk, that emerges from the left side of the upper jaw and is an evolutionary mystery that defies many of the known principles of mammalian teeth. The tooth's unique spiral, the degree of its asymmetry to the left side,... More »
Spooky video of 'lost world' sea life deep in the oceanLast Updated on 2012-01-08 00:00:00Scientists have discovered what they call a "lost world" more than 2,000 metres below the surface in the Southern Ocean, near Antarctica. . Report by Mark Morris. Like us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/itn and follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/itn
New world deep beneath Southern OceanLast Updated on 2012-01-04 00:00:00A lost world of Antarctic creatures which survive not on sun but hydrogen sulphide has been discovered deep beneath the Southern Ocean.
It's the first time scientists have been able to explore the East Scotia Ridge on the sea floor of the Southern Ocean, near Antarctica.
Reported in the journal PLoS Biology this week, the find includes new species of yeti crab, starfish, barnacles, sea anemones and a pure-white octopus unknown to science.
''The first survey of these particular vents, in the Southern Ocean near Antarctica, has revealed a hot, dark, 'lost world' in which whole communities of previously unknown marine organisms thrive,'' Oxford University's Alex Rogers, who led the research, said.
The creatures live in a dark world, heated by hydrothermal vents and ''black smokers'' which exist near volcanically active places where tectonic plates are moving apart.
Hot springs and... More »
Marshall Islands Declares World’s Largest Shark SanctuaryLast Updated on 2011-10-03 00:00:00The Marshall Islands is now home to the world’s largest shark sanctuary, an area of the central Pacific Ocean four times the size of California, The Pew Environment Group confirmed in a news announcement today. (Read the full announcement.)
The Washington-based conservation arm of The Pew Charitable Trusts, a nonprofit that works globally to establish pragmatic, science-based policies that protect the oceans, said the Nitijela, the Parliament of the Marshalls, passed legislation unanimously last week that ends commercial fishing of sharks in all 1,990,530 square kilometers (768,547 square miles) of the central Pacific country’s waters, an ocean area four times the landmass of California.
“We salute the Republic of the Marshall Islands for enacting the strongest legislation to protect sharks that we have seen,” said Matt Rand, director of global shark... More »
Drag Racer’s of the SeaLast Updated on 2011-05-10 00:00:00Giant squids measuring in excess of 60 feet and weighing a whopping 1,275 pounds are the most mysterious and the least known gigantic critter on Earth.
Cephalopods – from the Greek “head-footed” – have at least eight arms, and this includes all octopuses; cuttlefishes and squids have two additional tentacles that they can shoot out to capture prey. Chambered nautilus – the most primitive of all living Cephalopods have as many as 90 arms.
There are 40 genera of squids with somewhere between 600 and 700 species. All are equipped with claws, hooks, suckers, giant axons and complex lidless eyes similar to “higher” vertebrates (animals with spines), sharp beaks like parrots and some have lights all over them.
All squids have suckers on their arms and tentacles, some possess retractable claws and most are outfitted with fearsome toothed... More »
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