marine life

Coral polyps on Molasses Reef, Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.
Brent Deuel [CC BY 2.0] via Flickr

People picture coral reefs as bursting with color and teeming with a variety of undersea life, which many are. But their number is shrinking, says College of Charleston biologist Phil Dustan, because they are hyper-sensitive to temperature changes, and climate change is warming the ocean to intolerable levels for many reefs. In his 40-plus years of studying reefs, Dustan said, the Florida Keys, for example, have probably lost 90 to 95 percent of their living coral reefs.

A listener reports an odd object washed ashore on the beach at Hilton Head Island. It's the egg casing of a Horse Conch.

Beware the Man-of-War

May 16, 2017
A Portuguese Man-of-War, washed up on a beach on San Salvador Island in the Bahamas.
James St. John [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Even the dried carcass of a Portuguese Man-of-War, lying on the beach, can sting.

Cannonball Jellyfish (Stomolophus meleagris) washed up on the beach at Fort Fisher, North Carolina.
Mr.TinDC, via Flickr

The Cannonball is one of the most common Jellyfish, and is food for the Leatherback Sea Turtle.

The Cownose Ray

Jan 17, 2017
A Cownose Ray
Virginia State Parks (Creative Commons 2.0), via Wikimedia Commons

Rays, like the Cownose Ray, don't have teeth. Instead they have bony plates.