Six Months After the Heat Spiked, Caribbean Corals Are Still Reeling – Hakai Magazine

Staghorn Coral (Acropora cervicornis) in Bonaire, Caribbean Neatherlands, taken on January 21, 2024 (by Tom Murray CC BY-NC 2.0 DEED via Flickr).

For many Caribbean corals, last year’s heat proved too much to bear. The more time corals spend in hot water, the more likely they are to bleach, turning white as they expel the single-celled algae that live within their tissues. Without these symbiotic algae—and the energy they provide through photosynthesis—bleached corals starve. Survival becomes a struggle, and what had been a healthy thicket of colorful coral can turn into a tangle of skeletons…

How to Love an Oyster – Hakai

A cluster of Olympia oysters (by Matthew Gray, courtesy of Oregon State University CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED via Flickr).

Most people, even those who know a thing or two about oysters and may perhaps enjoy eating them, have no idea that the sweet and buttery bivalves they are slurping down in San Francisco or Vancouver are not the native species of the West Coast but Japanese imports…It is only on rare occasions at certain bougie establishments that you might encounter the much-smaller Olympia oyster (Ostrea lurida) on the menu, a Proustian remembrance with its miserly portion of meat and coppery taste…

Sponging Up Plastic Pollution – Hakai Magazine

Microplastics in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed: Microplastics from the Rhode River are pictured at the laboratory of Dr. Lance Yonkos in the Department of Environmental Science & Technology at the University of Maryland in College Park, Md., on Feb. 6, 2015 (Photo by Will Parson/Chesapeake Bay Program CC BY-NC 2.0 DEED via Flickr).

For millennia, humans have used dried natural sponges to clean up, to paint, and as vessels to consume fluids like water or honey; we’ve even used them as contraceptive devices. Whether synthetic or natural, sponges are great at ensnaring tiny particles in their many pores. And as scientists around the world are beginning to show, sponges’ cavity-filled forms mean they could provide a solution to one of our era’s biggest scourges: microplastic pollution….