On the surface, the ocean appears as a flat expanse of blue. Yet just beneath, lies an incredible kaleidoscope of color and life. Oceans matter for all of us, no matter where we live. We depend on the ocean for food, livelihood, cultural connection, cherished memories, and even the air we breathe.
Protecting Ocean Species and Their Habitats
From massive blue whales that embark on 4,000-mile migrations throughout the globe, to otherworldly coral reefs whose vibrant colors and secrets we return to again and again, we can’t deny our connection to our oceans. TNC is working around the globe to protect the oceans that so many species call home.
A diver explores a hard coral reef with Anthias and Damsels in the shallow waters off Amed (Jemeluk) near Bali, Indonesia.
Learn About 10 of our Oceans' Amazing Species
Learn more about 10 of our oceans' amazing species that reflect the range and impact of our efforts to protect marine habitats.
Also called white whales, their unusual color makes the Beluga one of the most distinguishable of all whales. Belugas are highly social and live in small groups called pods. These vocal communicators are often found in coastal waters of the Arctic.
The largest animal known to have ever existed, the blue whale weighs around 200 tons. Adults eat up to four tons of tiny krill each day and live up to 90 years. These iconic giants are important to ocean health, distributing nutrients as they feed.
Hawksbill Sea Turtle
This turtle spends much of its time in lagoons and coral reefs. They eat sponges which creates space for corals to grow. They keep jellyfish populations in check and feed on many other invertebrates.
The manatee was once mistaken for a mermaid by European sailors. Manatees are primarily herbivores. They feed for up to eight hours a day, consuming about 4% to 9% of their body weight daily (up to 108 lbs).
Master survival artists, climate heroes and nature’s nursery, mangroves provide habitat and shelter for over 3000 fish species, can store more carbon per area than tropical upland forests, and provide livelihoods for over 120M people.
Working with communities to restore mangroves
Learn more about how TNC is supporting local women in Kenya who are working to restore this super tree, cultivating hope and supporting livelihoods of communities.
Highly intelligent, highly threatened manta rays can have a wingspan of up to 30 feet. Manta means blanket or cloak in Spanish and when feeding, these rays swim with their mouths open wide to draw in plankton and krill.
The colorful parrotfish lives in coral reefs. Parrotfish eat algae and coral. They have teeth inside their throat that crushes the coral bits which become the white sands that form beautiful beaches.
The sea lion lives in many parts of the world and particularly enjoys sandy shores or rocks by the ocean. Sea lions are social, playful and among the most vocal of all mammals. Often seen in big groups, they can swim in bursts of up to 25 miles per hour.
Staghorn coral is named after its resemblance to antlers. They are the fastest growing corals, growing up to 4-8 inches per year. Speedy as staghorn corals are, their skeletons can be easily damaged by storms and human activity.
The whale shark is the largest fish alive today, growing an average 18-32 feet. Often called “gentle giants,” they feed on plankton and travel far distances to find food. Their white spotted coloration makes them easy to distinguish.
Good News About Nature
Updates from the conservation world + ways for you to get involved. Every month.