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What Do Marine Biologists Do?

Written by Stephan Aarstol

Life Forms

Microscopic Life

  • Plankton: Learn about the organisms that you see drift in the water of ponds, beaches and lakes.
  • Plants of the Sea : A fact sheet describing the microscopic animals and plants of the sea.
  • Marine Zooplankton : Images and descriptions of the marine group Zooplankton.
  • Virtual Copepod : An interactive virtual module of the copepod.

Plants & Algae

  • Aquatic Plants : A paper explaining the characteristics of the environment of aquatic plants, the types of plants in fresh water.
  • Rhodophyta: Rhodophyta is the scientific name for red algae. Jack Holt provides a description of the red algae.
  • Green Algae : A scientific guide to the plant that thrives in polluted water.
  • Seagrasses: This paper explains what makes some flowering plants seagrass.

Marine Invertebrates

  • Phylum Cnidaria : A guide to the diverse forms of jellyfish.
  • Ctenophores: A guide to ctenophores. These animals are found in the majority of marine habitats.
  • The Pompeii Worm : A collection of resources about the Pompeii worm.
  • Phylum Arthropoda : Provides a descriptive history of the species.
  • Porifera: A factsheet on sponges and other groups in the classification.



  • Green Sea Turtle : The largest hard-shelled sea turtle in the world and lives in warm tropical oceans.
  • Diamondback Terrapins : This species of turtle is the only turtle to live in habitats such as saltwater marshes, costal bays and lagoons in the United States.
  • Marine Iguanas : Learn about the behavior of these lizard like reptiles.
  • Australian Saltwater Crocodile : A classification fact sheet of the habitat, appearance and breeding behaviors of the Australian Saltwater Crocodile.


Marine Mammals

  • Blue Whale : A description of the largest mammal and creature to ever live on earth.
  • Sirenia: This mammal is related to the elephant and is known as the sea cow.
  • Sea Otter : A classification fact sheet on the sea otter.
  • Sea Mammals : Descriptions of the 7 different sea mammals.
  • Polar Bear : This marine mammal lives only in the northern hemisphere.
  • Sea Lion : A brief summary about one of the rarest sea lion species in the world, the Australian sea lion.

Oceanic Habitats


  • Coral Reefs : A guide to all things coral reef from the importance to the conservation of coral reef.
  • Types of Reefs : A guide to the four types of coral reefs including a video.

Deep Sea & Trenches

  • The Deep Sea : Explains what the deep-sea is and the inhabitants that dwell in the deep-sea.
  • Pelagic Zone : A guide to the pelagic zone in the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
  • Deep Sea Habitats : An incredible amount of information and research studies about deep-sea habitats and adaptations.

Intertidal & Shore

  • California's Rocky Intertidal : A summary of the original article from the California Coastal Resource Guide. Illustrates the conditions of the Rocky intertidal zones.
  • Rocky Shores : A scientists perceptions and understanding of the ecological interactions of the Rocky shores.
  • Mangroves: Mangrove trees grow on tropical shores. This paper describes the tropical shores that house these forests.
  • Intertidal Zone : Describes the common habitat of marine animals and plant life in this zone.