Although oceans cover over two-thirds of our planet’s surface, we’ve spent more time and money probing the deep blue of the stratosphere than we have diving into the waters that lap at our shores, to our detriment. With a passionate love for and fervent desire to educate us about the depth of the ocean’s resources, as well as about our lack of understanding and mismanagement of them, Frauke Bagusche’s captivating The Blue Wonder: Why the Sea Glows, Fish Sing, and Other Astonishing Insights From the Ocean plunges us into the mysteries of the ocean. Along the way, Bagusche shares stories of the fascinating creatures that dwell there, as well as the increasing dangers the oceans face from human misuse.
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As Bagusche points out, many of us only see the ocean from the sands of a beach and therefore never discover the teeming life and unbelievable animals that swim beneath that surface. Guiding readers below the waves, Bagusche introduces them to the microplankton that move, often in phosphorescent schools, throughout the waters, providing food for animals from shrimp to blue whales. She takes us on a journey to the coral reefs, the nurseries of the sea, where we meet clown mantis shrimp and learn about the appendages they develop to help them adapt to the reefs. We also learn why some seas taste saltier than others and about the difficult but wondrous journey of sea turtles, the singing of whales and the giant squids and isopods that are the denizens of the bathysphere, the ocean’s deepest and darkest waters.
The Blue Wonder takes its place alongside Carl Safina’s Song for the Blue Ocean in revealing the marvelous marine world and the urgent need to preserve a dazzling ecosystem we too often neglect.