What marine animals are mammals

Marine animals: Lots of photos and information about the various marine life

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The term marine animals does not describe a biological category, but rather summarizes all animals whose habitat is the sea: In addition to plankton, anemones, mussels, fish and whales, penguins, sea turtles and seals are also included.

1. The sea as the source of all life

When you think of marine animals, you think of fish, whales and crabs, by far However, the majority of the living organisms in the sea are microbes: Bacteria, fungi, algae and paramecia form the basis of the food chain of all other sea creatures and are essential to the metabolism. Researchers suspect that the first microorganisms appeared around 3.8 billion years ago and represent the basis of species development on earth. 70% of the living biomass (One can only speak of living beings with these unicellular organisms to a limited extent) is only provided by microorganisms.

The following phyla of different aquatic life can be distinguished:

  • Sponges
  • Cnidarians (e.g. jellyfish, anemones)
  • Annular worms (lugworm)
  • Molluscs
  • Arthropods (crabs)
  • Stachkins (starfish, sea urchins)
  • Vertebrates (fish and marine mammals)


2. The bodies of aquatic animals are very different from one another

As the list of the various marine creatures already shows, the marine animals category includes both fish and mammals, and in a broader sense even plants, fungi and bacteria. Each of these creatures inhabits a different area of ​​the ocean ecosystem and specializes in other nutritional reasons.


Certain single-cell organisms can survive even at great depths or in extremely salty waters such as the Dead Sea. Some living things are firmly bound to territory (e.g. coral reefs) others let yourself be carried by the current (Plankton, jellyfish) and others swim actively through the oceans (Fish, whales).


Some underwater animals live solitary (e.g. sharks), others form regular colonies (corals and anemones), which in turn serve as habitats for other marine animals. They can be microscopic or many feet tall; the 33 meter long blue whale is considered to be the largest sea dweller.


3. The sea as a habitat is threatened

Some animals prefer the colder waters of the northern Atlantic Ocean, while others feel particularly comfortable in the tropical temperatures of the Pacific Ocean. Also the The North and Baltic Seas are home to a rich biodiversity: You are probably familiar with the gray seal, plaice, Atlantic salmon, sea trout, cod, cod and moon jellyfish. Various crustaceans such as Baltic shrimp and European lobster are also on the menu in the coastal restaurants.


Due to the economic relevance of fishing, marine biologists estimate a 90% decline in larger marine species. By Overfishing of the stocks these can no longer regenerate and eventually die out. Authorities respond Sustainable fishing that protects the threatened fish species or breeds them in aquacultures.


Larger marine mammals often end up as bycatch in the huge nets of deep-sea fishing or are deliberately hunted for their meat. In addition, the global warming to a widespread extinction of species: Due to the high water temperatures, large areas of the coral reefs die, which in turn form an important ecosystem of the oceans and provide a home for numerous animals.


Finally, the extreme pollution of the seas by industrial waste and plastic to the dying of individual animals. In the stomachs of stranded whales, kilos of waste were sometimes found on which the animals perished. Various marine and animal welfare organizations such as WWF, OceanCare and Sea Shepherd are committed to the preservation and protection of biodiversity.


In our animal lexicon you can find comprehensive information about the various marine life: whether whales, sharks or fish - explore the fascinating world of the oceans with the animal lexicon.

To the picture credits.

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