beluga whale The Beluga Whale (Delphinapterus leucas) is a toothed whale that lives in cold Arctic and sub-Arctic waters. Belugas are very social animals, congregating in pods (social groups) of 2-25 whales. They are slow swimmers who are hunted by killer whales, polar bears, and people.Diet: The Beluga is a carnivore (meat-eater). It hunts and eats bottom-dwelling prey, including fish, squid, crustaceans, octopi, and worms.The Beluga uses echolocation to locate the prey
elephant seal The Northern Elephant Seal is a huge seal that lives in the Pacific Ocean (above 30 degrees North latitude). This marine mammal has very thick blubber. In the 1800s, the Northern Elephant Seal was hunted to the brink of extinction for its blubber (which was used for lamp oil). There were only about 100 of these seals remaining around 1890; now, more than 100 years later, the species is still recovering.Social Behavior: These intelligent and social animals congregate in large groups on land(called colonies) and smaller groups in the water (called rafts). Breeding areas arecalled rookeries. Males fight roughly for mating dominance, and they often bear manyscars from these battles.
eel Life Cycle of True Eels: Eels hatch from eggs that the female lays. A newly-hatched egg (called the larva or leptocephalus) is transparent, gelatinous, leaf- shaped, and free-floating. As the larva grows and is carried along by ocean currents, its body changes shape (it metamorphoses) into a tiny, transparent, cylindrical-shaped eel (called a glass eel). As it matures and develops someEels are bony fish that have a muscular, color, it is called an elver. It willsnake-like body. There about 500 species metamorphose one more time,of eels worldwide. Some eels live in salt becoming an adult (having adultwater, but many also live in fresh water. coloration and able to breed)
horseshoe crab The Horseshoe Crab (also known as the King Crab) is a hard-shelled invertebrate that lives in warm, shallow coastal waters on the sea floor. It is not really a crab; it is more closely related to arachnids (spiders and scorpions). The Horseshoe Crab first appeared about 500 million years ago (during the Ordovician Period), and has changed very little since. There are four species ofDiet: The Horseshoe Crab eats sea worms Horseshoe Crabs alive today; theyand mollusks (like young clams). They find live off the coasts of India, Japan,their prey while walking along the sea bed; Indonesia, the eastern USA, andthey are predominantly nocturnal (most active the Gulf of Mexico.at night).
Ichthyosaurus Ichthyosaurus was an ichthyosaur, a marine reptile; it was not a dinosaur. This sleek animal could perhaps swim at speeds up to 25 mph (40 kph). Ichthyosaurus lived from the early Jurassic period until the early Cretaceous period, roughly 206 to 140 million years ago.Anatomy: Ichthyosaurus was about 6.5 feet (2 m) long and ay have weighed about 200pounds (90 kg). It had a tall dorsal fin, a half-moon-shaped tail, paddle-like flippers, andsmooth skin. The nostrils were near the eyes on the top of the head. It had massive earbones and large eyes, probably indicating that it had acute hearing and keen eyesight.These marine reptiles gave birth to live young.
john dory fish The John Dory (Zeus faber) is an olive green-colored fish with a black spot on the side. These weak swimmers live near the sea floor, when it is from 15-120 ft (5-360 m) deep. John Dory are found in Western Indian Ocean, the eastern Atlantic Ocean, the Mediterranean Sea, and off New Zealand and Japan. They are edible.Anatomy: John Dory have 10 long, distinctive spines on their dorsal fin. They average about2 feet (60 cm) long and weigh roughly 5 pounds (2.4 kg). These fish are covered with tinyscales.
manta ray Manta rays (Manta birostris) are the largest rays and are closely related to sharks. These harmless fish have a short tail, a flat body, and no stinging spine. Rays have no bones, only cartilage. These huge ray rays are over 22 feet (6.7 m) wide and up to 3,000 pounds (1350 kg).Mantas are very acrobatic; they can even leap from the water. Remoras (another type offish) are frequently seen with mantas, staying near the mantas mouth (even going insidethe gill cavities). The remoras probably feed on parasites on the mantas body and eat bitsof the mantas food.
Lemon shark The lemon sharks back is deep yellow (giving it its name); its belly is off-white. It is used extensively in scientific research since it does well in captivity. It is requiem shark that is fairly common along the southeast coast of the USA. The triangular teeth are slightly curved. These long, thin, sharp teeth are designed to catch slippery fish, the mainstay of the lemon sharks diet.A young lemon shark loses an entire set of teeth, one at a time, every 7-8 days. The teeth arelocated in rows which rotate into use as needed. The first two rows are used in obtainingprey, the other rows rotate into place as they are needed. As teeth are lost, broken, or worndown, they are replaced by new teeth that rotate into place.
Lobster Lobsters are animals that have a tough shell and live on the ocean floor. There are many different types of lobsters, including the Maine (or American) lobster (an aggressive lobster with large front claws), the spiny lobster, and crayfish. Lobsters are invertebrates, animals without a backbone. Lobsters are cold-blooded; their body temperature depends on the temperature of the wate Anatomy: This crustacean has a hard exoskeleton, 4 pairs of jointed walking legs, a segmented body, sensory antennae, a tail fan, and compound eyes on stalks.Diet: Lobsters are carnivores (meat-eaters). Most lobsters are nocturnal (most active atnight). They are predators that eat crabs, clams, worms, snails, mussels, flounder, and otherlobsters.
Queen Conch or Pink Conch The Queen Conch or Pink Conch (Strombus gigas, named by Linnaeus in 1758) is a gastropod, a soft-bodied type of mollusk that is protected by a very hard shell. This invertebrate (animal without a backbone) is found in warm shallow waters in grassbeds of the Caribbean Sea. Conchs are eaten by many animals, including rays and people. The beautiful shell is also collected by people; the shell is also used for jewelry and for conch trumpets. The Queen Conch is a relatively slow-growing animal.
Purple Sea Urchin The purple sea urchin (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus) is a small sea urchin. It is a spiny, hard-shelled animal that lives on the rocky seafloor, from shallow waters to great depths. It is found off the west coast of North America, in the Pacific Ocean, from Canada to the Baja peninsula. It lives from the intertidal zone down to depths of about 33 feet (10 m). These globular marine invertebrates move very slowly along the seabed.Adult Anatomy: The purple sea urchinaverages about 3 1/4 inches (8.5 cm)across; the spines are about 1/3 inch(1 cm) long. This bottom-dwellerranges from a light purple to a deepreddish-purple color (juveniles aregreen).
Sand Dollar The Sand Dollar is a spiny, hard-skinned animal that is shaped like a coin (a flattened disk). There are many different species of sand dollars. They live on the sandy sea floor, from the intertidal zone (the area between high tide and low tide) down to the subtidal zone (the area below low tide). Most sand dollars are found at depths of 30 to 40 feet (9-12 m). Sand dollars partly bury themselves under the sand, with an edge poking up out of the sand. You can often find the dead "shell" of a sand dollar (called a "test") washedSand Dollars are echinoderms (which up on sandy beaches. If you break open a test,means "spiny skin") and are related to there are many hard, loose, white pieces; thesesea urchins and sea stars. Their tiny were the teeth of the Sand Dollar.larvae (baby Sand Dollars) travel manymiles as they are swept along by oceancurrents.
Bowhead Whale The bowhead whale is an Arctic baleen whale with a large, bow-shaped head that is up to 40% of its body length. The arched mouth is up to 10 feet (3 m) wide and 20 feet (6 m) deep. Bowheads live in pods, are rich in blubber (a subcutaneous fat layer 20- inch (50 cm) thick in places), and have 2 blowholes.Anatomy: Bowhead whales grow to be about 50-60 feet (15-18.5 m) long, weighing over 80-110tons (72-91 tonnes). The bowhead whales skin is usually black with a white spot on the lowersnout. Calves are blue to gray colored. Bowheads have no dorsal fin and no throat grooves.Bowheads have short, narrow flippers; the flukes (tail) are 27 feet (8.1 m) wide. The eyes arevery small and lips are huge. The females are slightly larger than males, as with all baleenwhales.
angelfish There are over 70 different species of Angelfish found in warm ocean waters around much of the world; a few species are from fresh water. Angelfish belong to the family Pomacanthus. These brightly- colored fish live in coral reefs in tropical seas and shallow subtropical waters. Angelfish reproduce by laying hundreds of eggs at a time. The Emperor Angelfish (Pomocanthus imperator, also known as the ImperatorAnatomy: The Emperor Angelfish grows to be Angel) is a warm-water ocean fish. Theabout 12 to 15 inches (30-38 cm) in the wild. juveline and adult Emperor Angelfish haveAngelfish have a flattened body. The first gill very different coloration. The juveniles arecover has a spine; this can help distinguish striped black and white; adults are yellow,Angelfish from the closely-related butterfly blue, black, and white.fish.
angel shark Angelsharks are benthic sharks (bottom- dwellers) that hide in the sand and mud by day and hunt in the reefs by night. They have a flattened body and long, wide fins that look like wings, giving these sharks their name. These slow-swimming predators are sometimes called monkfish because the blunt snout looks like a monks hood Different species of Angelsharks live on ocean floors at depths from 10 to 4,300 feet (3 to 1300 m). They live in warm Diet: Angelsharks eat fish, crustaceans, temperate oceans, mostly in the southern and mollusks (like squid). hemisphere.Anatomy: The Pacific Angelshark is up to 5 feet (1.5 m) long. It has tan skin with brownmarkings. It has large spiracles near the eyes, which are used for respiration.Classification: Kingdom Animalia, Phylum Chordata, Class Chondrichthyes,Order Squatiniformes, Family Squatinidae (angelsharks).
Killer whale The orca or killer whale is a toothed whale that is an efficient predator, even attacking huge young blue whales. Their only enemy is human beings. Orcas live in small, close-knit, life-long pods and have 1 blowhole. The killer whale belongs to the family of dolphins and is the biggest dolphin. It is sometimes called the "wolf of the sea" because its behavior is similar to that of wolves. Orcas grow to be about 27-33 feet (8-10 m)The Orcas skin is mostly black with distinctive long, weighing more than 8,000-12,000white patches. Orcas have stocky bodies and a pounds (3.600-5.400 kg). The male orca isrounded head with a distinctive beak. They larger than the female. They are the largesthave a tall, falcate (sickle-shaped) dorsal fin member of the dolphin family.and large, paddle-like flippers. The dorsal finof the male is taller (up to 6 ft tall) and moreupright than that of the female (whose dorsalfin is up to 4 ft tall).
manatee Manatees are aquatic mammals that are called sea cows (named this by Georg Wilhelm Steller, because they taste like beef). These plant eaters are slow swimmers; they have two flippers, each of which has three to four nails on the end (there are no external hind limbs). Short whiskers adorn the short, boxy snout. Manatees are closely related to the elephant and the hyrax (a small mammal that looks like a rodent)! Many years ago, there were legends that sailors, seeing manatees from a long distance, thought they were mermaids.The average adult manatee grows to be about 10-12 feet (3-3.6 m) long and weighs about1,000-1,800 pounds (450-800 kg).The average adult manatee grows to be about 10-12 feet (3-3.6 m) long and weighs about1,000-1,800 pounds (450-800 kg).
octupus The Octopus: The word octopus means "eight feet." Octopuses are solitary, eight- armed animals that live on the ocean floor. There are over 100 different species of octopuses. The Giant Octopus is the biggest octopus. This huge mollusk is up to 23 ft (7 m) from arm tip to arm tip, weighing up to 400 pounds (182 kg). The smallest is the Californian octopus, which is only 3/8 inch (1 cm) long.Anatomy: An octopus has a soft body and eight arms. Each arm has two rows of suction cups. Ifit loses an arm, it will eventually regrow another arm. It has blue blood. An octopus has an eyeon each side of its head and has very good eyesight. An octopus cannot hear.
Jelly fish Jellyfish are fish-eating animals that float in the sea - only a few jellyfish live in fresh water. They have soft bodies and long, stinging, poisonous tentacles that they use to catch fish. Venom is sent out through stinging cells called nematocysts. A jellyfish is 98% water. There are many types of jellyfish. The smallest jellyfish are just a few inches across. The largest jellyfish is the lions mane (Cyanea capillata), whose body can be over 3 feet (1 m) across, with much longer tentacles. SomeMany animals eat jellyfish, including sea jellyfish glow in the dark (this is calledturtles and some fish (including the sun fish). phosphorescence). Some of the deadliestClassification: Kingdom Animalia, Phylum jellies include the box jelly (Genus Carybdea)Cnidaria (corals, jellyfish, sea anemones, and the tiny, two-cm-across Irukandji jellyhydrozoans), Class Scyphozoa (Jellyfish), many (Carukia barnesi); the venomous sting of theseOrders, Families, Genera and Species. jellyfish can kill a person.
Sea horse Seahorses are a type of small fish that have armored plates all over their body (they dont have scales). There are about 50 different species of seahorses around the world. They live in seaweed beds in warm water and are very slow swimmers. Seahorses can change their color to camouflage (hide) themselves in order to hide from enemies. The most unusual seahorse is the Australian sea horse, which has leaf-like camouflage all over its body, making it almost disappear in the seaweed bed.Anatomy: Seahorses have a long, horse-like head (hence their name) and a curled tail.Seahorses range in size from under a centimeter long (Pygmy Seahorses) to about 1 foot (30 cm)long.Reproduction: The female seahorse produces eggs, but they are held inside the males bodyuntil they hatch; he is pregnant for about 40 to 50 days. The sea horse is the only animal inwhich the father is pregnant.
Swordfish The Swordfish, Xiphias gladius, is a fast-swimming fish that has a long, sharp bill. Swordfish may swim up to 60 mph (100 kph). They are found worldwide in all tropical, subtropical, and temperate seas, from the surface down to 400 or 500 fathoms. Swordfish migrate from rich feeding grounds to spawning grounds each year. Their life span may be about 9 years. Diet: Swordfish are carnivores (meat-eaters). They eat squid, octopus, fish, and crustaceans. Swordfish often kill their prey by swinging their sharp bill from side to side in a school of fish. They then eat the dead and wounded fish.Predators: Swordfish have very few predators. Orcas, sperm whales, some large sharks, andpeople eat swordfish.Anatomy: The biggest swordfish are about 14.5 ft (4.5 m) long, and 1190 pounds (540 kg) inweight. Females are larger than males.Reproduction: Females produce tens of millions of eggs and fertilization is external.