Life on Earth is heavily reliant on what happens in our oceans. Most marine life, in turn, relies on a regular and ongoing supply of phytoplankton. These microscopic marine plants lie at the base of the marine food chain and ...
Princeton researcher explores Southern Ocean patterns at Princeton University lab The Times of Trenton - NJ.com AOS has been involved in nearly every large-scale ocean observation project of the last two decades.
UH System Current News Study links box jellyfish abundance and environmental variability UH System Current News Such patterns, the UH scientists propose, are likely influenced by climate fluctuations that play a role in large scale primary...
No corner of the ocean will escape climate change, say scientists Carbon Brief (blog) That's the conclusion of a new study which says every part of the ocean's surface will feel the effects of climate change by the end of the century.
An Atlantic Ocean research alliance has been launched today (24 May) by the European Union, the United States and Canada, to align ocean observation efforts and promote the sustainable management of its resources.
Seawater is heating up and becoming more acidic, but those are only the first in a cascade of changes the world’s oceans are expected to go through by the end of the century as they respond to greenhouse gas emissions, a new study says.
The Take on Hake http://www.fishermensnews.com/ Heather Mann is executive director of the Newport, Oregon-based Midwater Trawlers Cooperative, an organization representing vessel owners who fish for hake off the Pacific coast, as well as pollock...
Vision Systems Design Underwater vision systems show crabs surviving off deep sea methane seeps Vision Systems Design In addition, the team captured photographs of the sea floor during the project via a downward-facing digital still camera from...
For more than a century, Wales' shellfish industry was in decline due to pollution and changing tastes.
But in the last three years, the British Shellfish Association has reported a 10% growth in the industry, estimated to be worth £60m a year.
Plans have gone ahead for an oyster bed in Swansea not used since the 1920s to be repopulated, and products on offer from Wales have become more diverse.
However experts warn that more needs to be done to prevent pollution.
Earlier in September, for the first time since over-fishing and pollution wiped them out a century ago, a Swansea-based marine biologist was given permission to reintroduce young oysters to the beds which gave Oystermouth its name.
But the industry is growing ever bigger and more diverse, ranging from prawns off Pembrokeshire to Great Orme lobster.
Sales of mussels grown in the Menai Strait and off Conwy now outnumber the cockles harvested by a ratio of almost two-to-one.
Llandudno's Christopher Owen - who was the Welsh culinary association's chef of the year for 2012 - believes TV cookery programmes have brought shellfish back into culinary fashion.
"Ten years ago it was pretty impossible to source locally-grown seafood other than cockles and mussels - not that it mattered, because no-one wanted to order it in any case," he said.
"But today people are watching more and more cookery programmes and becoming aware of the fantastic range of shellfish they could be enjoying.
"My customers can't get enough of it now. It's by far our biggest seller," he added.
Wayne Jones, manager of wholesalers Mermaid Seafood in Bangor, said it had taken the industry a while to catch up with the public.
"Wales has always had fantastic conditions for all sorts of shellfish: Nice coves, shallow estuaries; a good flow of water from the Irish Sea, Atlantic and Bristol Channel; and big tidal ranges," he said.
"The thing was nobody wanted what we could harvest.
"Years ago we used to clear other shellfish away to make room for cockles and mussels.
"It started to become commercially viable when customers became concerned about the environmental consideration of farmed shellfish, and demanded locally-caught produce.
"My local chip shop is selling lobster faster than I can get it to them," he added.
Yet Prof Mike Kaiser from Bangor University's School of Ocean Sciences warned that the picture was not all positive.
"There is still a particular issue with cockles from the Burry Inlet dying prematurely before they can be harvested," he said.
"There are many theories why this may be happening but as yet nothing has been proven.
"Other than that the industry is very healthy but the fishermen need help to keep it like that."
He explained that seawater purity was divided into A, B and C standards.
And whilst the majority of the Welsh coast is rated A, too many sewers were still being allowed to overflow into the sea.
"There is an issue in bad weather when sewers flood which means that in the Menai Strait in particular the water quality can dip to the B standard," he said.
"The fish caught there is perfectly safe but can't be eaten raw.
Poor water quality
"Plus supermarkets won't take any chances these days, so mussel growers in Wales find themselves in a ridiculous position... before they can sell it.
"They have to ship their catch to Holland in order to purge the impurities in the Dutch A-standard waters."
But one Swansea producer thinks he may have come up with the answer.
After years of regulations and poor water quality hampering his attempts to harvest enough mussels to meet demand, Colin Thomas has begun growing them on ropes in the once-filthy Swansea Docks.
"I just got fed up of the red tape of harvesting from the sea floor. The rules change every week it seems," he said.
"So I started looking for somewhere to farm mussels instead, and discovered to my amazement that the docks which used to be black with coal and oil now has some of the purest water in Wales - pollution of 20 parts per million when the EU A-standard is 240 parts.
"The rope technique used to be used a great deal in Shetland and the west of Ireland, but it fell out of favour for some reason.
"We introduced 20,000 seed mussels to the rope and in water this pure with controlled feeding, they mature in a year compared with two in the wild.
"Then all you do is pull out the rope when they're ready.
"We've just had our first harvest of 60,000 and are on course to be producing three-quarters of a million mussels a year by 2016.
"Seafood can be a boom industry for Wales going forward but producers need to think creatively, and the authorities need to give us a hand by doing something about water quality and cutting back on red tape."
This article is a reprint of the press release, Latest Review of Science Reveals Ocean in Critical State From Cumulative Impacts, posted by the The International Programme on the State of the Ocean (IPSO) on Oct 3, 2013.
The Earth Sciences Building is located on the Vancouver campus of the University of British Columbia. It is the new home for three of UBC’s Science departments—Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences, Statistics, and the Pacific Institute of the Mathematical Sciences.
In addition to enhancing the growing links between each department by providing valuable opportunities for shared learning and collaboration, the ESB expands the Faculty of Science’s public face and helps to create a vibrant and animated centre for the Faculty on campus.
The wood structure provides a welcoming environment, and as an added environmental benefit, the 1,317 cubic meters of wood in the structure store 1,094 tonnes of carbon, the equivalent of taking 415 cars off the road for a year. To provide rain cover for pedestrians, a solid wood canopy wraps three sides of the project. It extends from inside the building, where it forms the interior ceiling finish of the museum and cafe, blurring the boundaries between interior and exterior space...
As six-legged robots go, other than its nifty red and yellow paint job, the Crabster robot has a pretty standard look. It isn’t the biggest hexapod, like the impressive two-ton Mantis, or a tiny hexapod with a weird gait, like Boston Dynamics’ RHex. What makes Crabster special isn’t so much what it is but where it will walk—the robot was designed to navigate the seafloor.
Ocean researchers already use both autonomous and remote-control undersea vehicles, but propulsion systems tend to kick up sediment, adversely affecting visibility, and lack the power to deal with strong currents.
Crabster’s creators designed the robot to solve these problems. Developed by the Korea Institute of Ocean Science and Technology (KIOST), the robot can withstand heavy currents by changing its posture (roll, pitch, and yaw), and the robot’s measured gait won’t significantly disturb sediment.
Crabster is lowered to the seafloor by crane and remains attached to an umbilical for power, limiting where it can go but allowing for continuous operation. Four operators remotely drive the robot from the surface—directing and monitoring its movement, manipulators, cameras, lights, and sonar.
On the seafloor, the half-ton robot illuminates murky water with a spotlight, records what it sees with ten onboard cameras, and uses its two front legs to pick up and manipulate objects. Researchers hope to send Crabster to explore shipwrecks where they can return small treasures in the robot’s retractable tray. They’ll haul larger objects by attaching a tow cable connected to the vessel above.
Crabster recently took its first dip in the ocean and will soon head out to sea to begin work 200 meters below the surface. Eventually Crabster’s engineers hope to give it an onboard power source, and we imagine future iterations might combine the best of both worlds—a Crabster that folds its legs to go swimming and, when a stroll better suits its purposes, deploys its legs for a landing on the sea-floor.
"Ocean Science is a free iPad app that at least six people have recommended to me over the last few weeks. The app is essentially a seven chapter, multimedia ebook about the basics of ocean science. Each chapter includes animations, pictures, video, and text."
"If you’re exploring the ocean with your students or looking for an informational multimedia text, check out Ocean Science. http://bit.ly/ZEsKix ; This fantastic free app is full of beautiful pictures and rich information about ocean life."
Mauritius Islands Hosts Meeting of the Indian Ocean Observing System Prensa Latina 21 de octubre de 2013, 00:03Port Louis, October 21 (Prensa Latina) Mauritius Islands will host from today until October 24 the 10th Tenth Meeting of the Indian Ocean...
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