Close-up of a fiber with brightly colored pathogens beside it
Microplastics in Seawater May Harbor Parasites
Laboratory experiments find that Toxoplasma, Cryptosporidium, and Giardia can congregate on microplastic beads and fibers, suggesting they might make their way into and around the world’s oceans by hitching rides on tiny bits of trash.
ABOVE: University of California, Davis
Microplastics in Seawater May Harbor Parasites
Microplastics in Seawater May Harbor Parasites

Laboratory experiments find that Toxoplasma, Cryptosporidium, and Giardia can congregate on microplastic beads and fibers, suggesting they might make their way into and around the world’s oceans by hitching rides on tiny bits of trash.

Laboratory experiments find that Toxoplasma, Cryptosporidium, and Giardia can congregate on microplastic beads and fibers, suggesting they might make their way into and around the world’s oceans by hitching rides on tiny bits of trash.

ABOVE: University of California, Davis
marine life
A black and white photo of a man standing at a lab bench, holding up a glass jar
Reimagining Ecology, 1939
Lisa Winter | Apr 4, 2022
Edward Ricketts built his laboratory just onshore from the swirling tidepools of Monterey Bay, California, an ideal backdrop against which he developed a new system for studying the ecology of any given habitat.
Photo of krill and plankton in the sea, macro detail
Fear Could Help Explain the Behavior of Animals in the Ocean
Catherine Offord | Jan 4, 2022
Avoidance of predation is a driving force behind the daily movements of marine creatures across the food web, a study concludes.
The man-of-war fish (Nomeus gronovii), a species of medusafish, near the tentacles of a siphonophore.
Medusafishes Are Grouped by Shared, Odd Traits: Study
Devin A. Reese | Dec 1, 2021
Shared features, such as thick, slimy skin and a throat filled with teeth, suggest that medusafishes are all related.
hagfish slime on hands
Hagfish Slime Cells Tailored to Deter Predation
Chloe Tenn | Sep 28, 2021
The Scientist spoke with Chapman University’s Yu Zeng about his lab’s finding that the slime-producing cells of the slippery marine fish vary with the creature’s size, which may be an adaptation to thwart different predators.
Octopod Sailors, 300 BC–present
Jef Akst | Nov 1, 2020
Lore has always surrounded argonauts, pelagic octopuses that build shells and travel the seas.
smalleye stingray marine ocean biology animal wildlife largest photo id identification migration long distance
Image of the Day: Photo ID
Chia-Yi Hou | Jun 27, 2019
Marine biologists identify smalleye stingrays using the white spots on their backs.
fossil crab new species Callichimaera perplexa cretaceous Colombia USA
Image of the Day: Crab Legs
Chia-Yi Hou | May 1, 2019
A crab fossil new to scientists lived in the age of dinosaurs in what is now Colombia and the US.
Fastest-Ever Cell Contractions Observed in Primitive Invertebrate
Abby Olena | Dec 13, 2018
The microscopic marine animal Trichoplax adhaerens may use rapid changes in cell shape to avoid being ripped apart by forces in the ocean.
Warming Water and Lack of Oxygen Caused Massive Extinction
Abby Olena | Dec 6, 2018
Simulations of Earth’s climate 252 million years ago reveal that the same symptoms of modern climate change likely account for the time period’s extensive loss of marine life.
Eel-bot
The Scientist Staff | Sep 26, 2018
University of California, San Diego, graduate student Caleb Christianson explains the development of his eel-inspired robot.
Life Reemerged Just Years After Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid Impact
Ashley Yeager | May 30, 2018
Nutrient-rich water helped marine organisms reinhabit Chicxulub crater relatively quickly after the mass-extinction event.
Image of the Day: Glowing Tide
The Scientist Staff, The Scientist Staff | May 10, 2018
Each year, bioluminescent microorganisms create striking displays on the beaches of San Diego.
Marine Protected Areas Aren’t Protected Against Climate Change
Ashley Yeager | May 7, 2018
If left unchecked, greenhouse gas emissions will drive ocean temperatures up, affecting wildlife in these regions.
Ocean Heat Wave Wreaked Havoc on Great Barrier Reef
Ashley Yeager | Apr 18, 2018
Not only did many corals die in recent years, but some were actually killed by the hotter temperatures themselves, rather than bleaching.
Ocean Sunfish Could Offer Clues to the “Rise of Slime”
Ashley Yeager | Apr 1, 2018
A controversial hypothesis suggests that jellyfish may one day rule the oceans, and Mola mola may tell us if we are approaching a tipping point.
Endangered Right Whales Have No New Babies This Breeding Season
Ashley Yeager | Mar 27, 2018
Trained spotters haven’t seen any newborns, suggesting trouble for the animal’s overall survival.
Image of the Day: Dumbo Octopus Hatchling
The Scientist Staff, The Scientist Staff | Feb 21, 2018
The baby cephalopod looks and behaves like an adult from the moment it emerges from the egg.
Image of the Day: Caught Red-Handed
The Scientist Staff, The Scientist Staff | Jan 26, 2018
Divers come upon a new population of red handfish near Tasmania.
NOAA: Common Pesticides Threaten Endangered Salmon, Other Marine Life
Shawna Williams | Jan 15, 2018
Organophosphates jeopardize dozens of species, a federal review finds.