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Ocean and coast

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Life under the sea isn’t as quiet as you might think. Both fish and sea mammals court, frighten one another and share information using sounds, which carry much further in water than in air.

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Deep-sea creatures: Mesopelagic resources

Fish and other animals that live at depths of 200-1,000 metres are referred to as mesopelagic. The world’s oceans are probably home to more than ten billion tonnes of these species.

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Mining waste

Dumping mining waste in the sea or fjords can have a negative impact on marine ecosystems.


The ocean, coast and fjords

Norway has a long coast, deep fjords and extensive territorial waters, and they are all teeming with life.


The ocean’s climate

Climate change is affecting the oceans themselves and everything that lives in them. The Institute of Marine Research monitors Norwegian waters in various ways, and our data going back to the end of the 19th century gives us valuable insight into the ocean’s climate.


Tagged species

The Institute of Marine Research has several projects where labelling of different fish species is included. The marks contain data on the temperature of the sea, how deep the fish has swum, how much it has grown since it was marked, etc. 

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Models represent a simplification of nature used to describe something that is difficult or impossible to measure directly. At the Institute of Marine Research, models are important for understanding ocean currents, fish stocks, aquaculture, sea lice dispersion and ecosystems. 



Otoliths, also called earstones, are often referred to as the fish's black box. By analyzing otoliths, one can learn about the age, growth, type of fish (e.g. coastal cod/cod), temperature conditions, diet, migration pattern, maturation, number of spawning periods, genetic diversity and pollution. The Institute of Marine Research has collected large amounts of otoliths from the beginning of the 20th century to the present day.


Plastic litter in the oceans

Everything from tiny particles to big chunks of plastic are floating around in the oceans. Large quantities end up on beaches as well as on the sea bottom.


Seismic surveys

Seismic surveys use powerful, low-frequency sound waves to map and analyse the ground below the sea floor in order to locate oil and gas reserves. Their frequency range overlaps with the frequency range that fish can hear, so they can be disturbing to fish.