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Ocean & Earth Sciences

Protecting the deep sea: a call for balancing mining and ecosystem sustainability

A new species from a new order of Cnidaria collected at 4,100 meters in the Clarion-Clipperton Fracture Zone (CCZ) that lives on sponge stalks attached to nodules. Photo credit: Craig Smith and Diva Amon, ABYSSLINE Project.

Thousands of feet below the ocean’s surface lies a hidden world of undiscovered species and unique seabed habitats—as well as a vast untapped store of natural resources including valuable metals and rare-earth minerals. Technology and infrastructure development worldwide is dramatically increasing demand for these resources, which are key components in everything from cars and modern buildings to computers and smartphones. ...

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Timing is critical for the success of some spawning fish

Timing is critical for the snapper and other reef fish that aggregate to spawn each year. Photo credit: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

The larvae of some species of reef fish appear to survive better depending on the timing of when they were spawned, according to new research from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology(HIMB) and the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis (NIMBioS). The findings advance earlier research that suggested only spawning location is critical and ...

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Hōkūleʻa crew and UH researchers explore Great Barrier Reef

Hokulea Great Barrier Reef

Three key University of Hawaiʻi staff contributed to Hawaiian voyaging canoe Hōkūleʻa’s exploration and research at Australia’s Great Barrier Reef in June. Chad Kalepa Baybayan is a master navigator and serves as astronomer in residence at UH’s ʻImiloa Astronomy Center on the Big Island. UH graduate assistant Haunani Kane is serving as Hōkūleʻa’s assistant navigator. UH researcher Ruth Gates, an ...

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Deep sea sharks are buoyant

Shark with tag

Scientists from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and University of Tokyo revealed that two species of deep-sea sharks, sixgill and prickly sharks, are positively buoyant—they have to work harder to swim downward than up and they can glide uphill for minutes at a time without using their tails. Their results were published in a recent study,“Unexpected Positive Buoyancy in ...

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Advances in animal tracking redefine how we discover and manage ocean life

Advances in telemetry enabled discoveries of tiger sharks' behavior and movement. Credit: K Holland.

A new paper, published this month in Science, details the explosion in aquatic animal tracking research over the past 30 years and its impact on discoveries about the movements, migrations, interactions and survival of both common and elusive aquatic species. The review, co-authored by Kim Holland, researcher at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB), ...

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Plants may run out of time to grow under ongoing climate change

Corn at Waimanalo Research Station Open House

A key potential “benefit” of global warming — namely, that plants at northern latitudes will thrive in a warmer world — is challenged by a new study released by University of Hawai’i scientists. The prevailing assumption ignores the fact that plants in the North will remain limited by solar radiation, curbing positive effects of warming and additional CO2 availability. In ...

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Professor Brian Bowen receives prestigious 2015 Kobe Award

Brian Bowen

Dr. Brian Bowen, research professor at the Hawai‘i Institute of Marine Biology and University of Hawai‘i Sea Grant College Program funded researcher, was awarded the 2015 Kobe Award for lifetime achievement in aquatic biology. The award, established in 2011 by Suma Aqualife Park in Kobe, Japan, is given to only one scientist each year in honor of his or her considerable ...

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Dive discovers missing aircraft hangar of sunken WW II-era Japanese submarine

Pisces V submersible

The dramatic discovery of a lost World War II-era Imperial Japanese Navy mega-submarine by a University of Hawaiʻi and U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) team in December 2013 inspired a new search by NHK, the Japanese Broadcasting Corporation, to find key missing pieces of the battleship. The recent survey, the first to return to I-400 submarine since its ...

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David Karl elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

David Karl

Some of the world’s most accomplished leaders from academia, business, public affairs, the humanities and the arts have been elected members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Among those elected this year is David Karl, the Victor and Peggy Brandstrom Pavel Chair in Oceanography and Director of the Daniel K. Inouye Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education (C-MORE) at ...

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[VIDEO] How to train your coral

Coral

Scientists warn extreme sea temperatures could cause a “historic” coral reef die-off around the world over, following a massive coral bleaching event in fall 2014 in the North Pacific. A huge swathe of the Pacific was affected, including the Northern Marianas Islands, Guam, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Hawai‘i, and Kiribati. Some areas recorded serious bleaching for the first time, and ...

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