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We get excited when lava flows from our volcanoes, but actually 90% of the volcanic activity that happens worldwide occurs underwater!
Water is a unique molecule. Most liquids become denser as they cool down, but when water freezes, it becomes less dense, allowing ice to float. If ice did not float, a lot of animals would be in trouble. In fresh water ecosystems, animals rely on the top layer of water freezing over, which actually allows heat to be trapped underneath and keeps them alive through the winter.
The air above the ocean is intricately connected to the ocean floor miles below. Carbon dioxide dissolves into the surface of the ocean from the atmosphere and phytoplankton use the carbon dioxide for photosynthesis. Other organisms at the surface eat the phytoplankton and when they die they sink down towards the sea floor. Creatures living in the deep sea depend on this falling matter for food.
Eutrophication is when a large amount of nutrients enters the water and causes a sharp increase in the algae population, which then rapidly die off once these nutrients are used up, creating low-oxygen conditions. Eutrophication often happens in areas where fertilizer run-off from agriculture gets into the water. In extreme cases, it can kill off a large area of marine life from lack of oxygen.
Have you heard of coral bleaching? That is what happens when corals lose their green or brown colored algae living inside of them due to environmental stress such as warmer temperatures. If conditions return to normal fairly quickly, the algae will come back; but if conditions change for too long then the coral will be permanently bleached and won’t be able to survive.
Photo: SDU Researchers at the University of Southern Denmark have developed new ways to transform jellyfish – a traditional Asian delicacy – into a crispy snack. For thousands of years, jellyfish have been consumed in Asia and are traditionally prepared using salts and alum to extract water from the gel-like tissues. This process of preparation takes over a month from start to finish, creating a limitation to expansion of production of traditionally prepared jellyfish products. While studying these traditional practices, the researchers at the University of Southern Denmark developed a... (more)