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Countdown to 2015: Our 14 Most Popular Stories from 2014

It's been quite a year at NOAA Fisheries. Take a look at our top 14 features, including an animated video on healthy habitat, research on large marine fish, sea turtles, a collection of science-filled podcasts, sharks, and even a climate portal. Read them all below.


Healthy Habitat: The Foundation of Our Seafood and Fisheries

We start the countdown with our video on healthy habitat. Habitat is the foundation for the commercial and recreational saltwater fishing industries that provided more than 1.7 million jobs and over $199 billion dollars in economic activity in 2012. Our video explores the important role healthy habitat serves as the foundation of America’s seafood and fisheries and what NOAA is doing to conserve habitat to rebuild fisheries. Watch it and see how habitat supports the fish you love to eat. Read more...

 


Six Surprising Facts about Whale Sharks

Whale sharks are up next! Did you know that whale sharks spend much of their lives wandering the high seas alone? This makes whale sharks hard to study, so very little is known about them. This year, we brought you six surprising facts about these creatures. Read more...


 
Climate, Fisheries, and Protected Resources

Climate change was a topic that interested many people this year. Climate change is already having a profound effect on life in the oceans. That's why NOAA Fisheries scientists are working to understand the effects of climate change and ocean acidification so we can minimize the disruptions they cause, adapt to the changes that are coming, and ensure that future generations can enjoy the benefits of healthy marine ecosystems. Take a look at some of the things we're working on and browse our portal page, Climate, Fisheries, and Protected Resources. Read more...

 


Read Our #SharkChat with a NOAA Scientist

NOAA scientist Tobey Curtis answered your questions about sharks on our Twitter feed! In this photo, Tobey holds a bull shark pup, which he helped tag so that he and other scientists could monitor its movements. Research like this helps us learn more about sharks so that we can best monitor and manage shark populations. If you missed the chat, not to worry-- you can read a recap. Read more...

 


Podcast—White Shark Recovery

The top stories from 2014 wouldn't be complete without more sharks. This podcast looked at some new research on Atlantic white sharks. These sharks were hunted indiscriminately for almost two decades following the release of the movie Jaws, but now they have slowly been making a comeback. The lead author on this recently published study was none other than NOAA scientist Tobey Curtis. Read more...

 


Celebrate Shark Week with NOAA Fisheries!

Shark Week continued in 2014 and NOAA Fisheries delivered tons of sharky science, stories, videos, features, and even a game called Name that Shark. It's sharks 365 days a year for us, but we made sure to shine a spotlight on NOAA's key role in shark conservation, management, and policy. Read more...

 


Podcast—Changing Climate in Fisheries Management

Our 2014 podcasts covered a wide variety of topics, and this one on changing climate and fisheries management was of great interest. How will we manage fish populations as the climate changes? NOAA Fisheries biologist John Manderson is working on one small piece of the puzzle. Read more...

 

Tagged Bluefin Tuna Recaptured After Sixteen Years at Large

A tagged bluefin tuna recaptured after sixteen years at large captured the number seven slot. Al Anderson, a charter boat captain out of Point Judith, Rhode Island, participates in the NOAA Fisheries Cooperative Tagging Program, which provides free tags to fishermen so they can contribute to our scientific understanding of fish. One of the fish he tagged, a bluefin tuna, was recently recaptured after 16 years. By tagging fish for NOAA’s Cooperative Tagging Program, fishermen have contributed greatly to our scientific understanding of many valuable species. Read more...

 
 


Podcast—Gray Whale Calves Born in Big Numbers

Our gray whale podcast brought some good news for gray whales, who were having a great year with a near-record number of new calves. Every year, NOAA Fisheries scientists stand on the beach in California and count the number of newborn calves heading north. According to Wayne Perryman, a biologist with NOAA's Southwest Fisheries Science Center in La Jolla, CA, it was a banner year for calf production. Read more...

 
 


Blue and Flathead Catfish Invade Chesapeake Bay 

Catfish were quite popular in 2014! Our story on blue and flathead catfish taught us about how these invasive species are contributing to changes in the Chesapeake Bay's food web to the detriment of native fish. The NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office has funded research to take a closer look at the biology and feeding habits of these fish and continues to support efforts to manage the invasive catfish through their participation in the Chesapeake Bay Program’s Invasive Catfish Task Force. Read more...

 

Celebrating Sea Turtles
We love turtles and so do you. This year we celebrated our first ever NOAA #SeaTurtleWeek to highlight the beauty and wonder of sea turtles as well as our conservation efforts and scientific research to safeguard and recover these creatures. Learn more about the six species of sea turtles found in U.S. waters and look out for more turtles in 2015.  Read more...

 


Crude Oil Causes Defects in Large Marine Fish


Our number three spot involves research on the effects of crude oil on large marine fish. Researchers from NOAA Fisheries and Stanford University found that some petroleum compounds act as  ion channel blockers in the heart cells of young tuna, disrupting normal cardiac function.art cells of young tuna, disrupting normal cardiac function. Read more...

 


NOAA Lists 20 New Corals Under ESA

Corals claim our second most popular story this year. Coral reefs are critical to the health of marine ecosystems. Recognizing the threats coral species face, NOAA listed 20 more corals as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. Actions taken both locally and globally will help protect and conserve biologically diverse coral reefs. Read more...
 
 


Video Podcast—Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Offers a 
New View of Killer Whales

The number one spot goes to our pioneer video podcast featuring unmanned aerial vehicles and killer whales. You've never seen killer whales like this before! For the first time, scientists have used an unmanned aerial vehicle to photograph killer whales from above. This gives scientists a new way to monitor killer whale health and reproduction while giving us all a stunning new view of the species. Be sure to listen to our eye-opening podcast and see amazing photos of killer whales in our to story of the year! Read more...