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Inf-Lite Teacher / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

From coral bleaching to ocean acidification, the pumping of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and the resulting climate change is a major problem for the world's marine life. And just last week, a study revealed that the world's oceans have absorbed 60 percent more heat than previously thought.

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A great white shark. Terry Goss / CC BY-SA 3.0

A Cape Cod area harbormaster had strong words for beachgoers, urging them to be more cautious as the number of great white sharks swimming close to shore increases, The Boston Globe reported.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Seal #108, left, and a small pup named "Premie" swim up to the edge of their pool for their 3 p.m. feeding at the Marine Mammals of Maine rehabilitation center on Aug. 14. Brianna Soukup / Portland Press Herald via Getty Images

Researchers think a mysterious die-off of seals along the Maine coast could be linked to chemical pollution, the Portland Press Herald reported Sunday.

More than 400 dead or stranded seals have washed up on the Maine coast so far this year, more than in any of the past seven years, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) statistics.

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Juvenile harp seal. Virginia State Parks / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

A young harp seal that washed up dead on the Scottish Isle of Skye last Friday likely died of health complications after ingesting a small piece of plastic wrap, according to scientists who examined the animal.

Scientists with the Scottish Marine Animal Strandings Scheme (SMASS) performed a necropsy on the animal and described it as an "unusual case" in a Facebook post Wednesday. First, Scotland is outside of the normal range for the Arctic harp seal. Secondly, death from plastic ingestion is rare for seals.

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Weddell seals. U.S. Geological Survey

Scientists studying the warming waters and salinity of the Southern Ocean's Amundsen Sea—which surrounds the Thwaites and Pine Island glaciers, two of the largest and fastest-retreating glaciers in Antarctica—are using a novel method to collect data.

They temporarily glued sensors onto the fur of Antarctic seals. Really.

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Penguin colony, St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia. size4riggerboots / Flickr / CC BY-ND 2.0

Following a £10 million ($13.5 million) eradication scheme and nearly a decade of work, South Georgia was officially declared rodent-free on Tuesday, the first time since humans arrived on the island more than 200 years ago.

The British territory is one of the world's last great wildlife areas. There you'll find 98 percent of the world's Antarctic fur seals, half the world's elephant seals and four species of penguins—including King Penguins with around 450,000 breeding pairs. The birdlife includes albatrosses, prions, skua, terns, sheathbills and petrels.

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Loggerhead turtle trapped in an abandoned drifting net in the Mediterranean Sea. Jordi Chias / naturepl.com

Governments around the world are waking up to the scourge of plastics on our oceans and its creatures by banning items such as shopping bags and drinking straws. But an often-overlooked form of plastic waste is also a major threat to our seas: "ghost" gear.

A report released Thursday from World Animal Protection highlights that every year 640,000 metric tons of fishing nets are lost or discarded in our oceans each year, trapping and killing countless marine mammals, including endangered whales, seals and turtles. Shallow coral reef habitats also suffer further degradation from the gear, which can take up to 600 years to decompose.

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This lucky seal pup was rescued from a Maine highway. Would you know what to do if you found an ocean animal in trouble? National Marine Life Center

By Amy McDermott

At 5 a.m. one morning last spring, a baby seal wandered into the sleepy town of Bar Harbor, Maine. The little pup waddled off the beach and onto the highway. Locals called the police. The police called Rosemary Seton.

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A warming climate and expanding industrial fishing threaten the Antarctic Ocean and its iconic creatures such as penguins. Antarctica Bound / Flickr

Greenpeace's ship Arctic Sunrise is on its way to Antarctica, where the crew on board will be the first humans ever to visit the seafloor in the Weddell Sea.

The three-month expedition will aim to further the case for a massive ocean sanctuary.

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A U.S. appeals court ruled that federal agencies can list species as threatened based on projections of how climate change will impact their habitats.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Oil companies and Alaska natives had challenged the National Marine Fisheries Service's decision to list a seal species as threatened because of sea ice loss, but the court upheld the decision.

"The service need not wait until a species' habitat is destroyed to determine that habitat loss may facilitate extinction," Judge Richard A. Paez wrote.

For a deeper dive:

LA Times, AP, The Hill, Arctic Daily News, Gizmodo, IB Times, Climate Home

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