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Earth's Oceans

You beauty! A pod of dolphins at 11 o'clock sharp, fellow crewmates! Ain't that a sight for salty socks!

Oceans are enormous areas of water. Did you know that oceans cover more than 70% of the Earth’s surface? The average depth is 3,800 metres, with a maximum of nearly 11,000 metres. Scientists think there’s around 95% of the ocean left to explore, so there’s a lot they still don’t know. But, we do know dem oceans are home to 50-80% of the world’s species, from giant whales to tiny animals called plankton. That's why you should respect dem ancient waterways!

There are five oceans around the world, which all vary in size, location and temperature. The largest and deepest is the Pacific Ocean, followed by the Atlantic Ocean, then the Indian Ocean, Southern Ocean and the smallest and most shallow – the Arctic Ocean. That's me baby!

Ocean waters can be divided into zones. These zones vary depending on how much light reaches 'em and how much the temperature changes. Each zone provides a habitat for different kinds of life. Let me have a little tinker in me memory box for a bit more knowledge... Got it!

The Sunlight Zone extends to 200 metres below the surface. This zone is full of life, plants, and light – but you might’o guessed that from the name, eh matey!

The Twilight Zone is between 200 and 1,000 metres down. It is too dark for plants, but provides enough light for animals to hunt – this is where predators and prey battle it out for survival. Ain't a safe place down there, kiddo!

Next is the Midnight Zone, which is between 1,000 and 4,000 metres down. This is where all natural light ends. Most of dem animals that live at these depths are black or red due to lack of light.

After that is the Abyss, around 4,000 to 6,000 metres below the surface. Food is very scarce this deep down and the water temperature is near freezin' – shiver me timbers! Many creatures in this zone are scavengers, only feeding when they can find food.

At the very bottom, between 6,000 and 10,000 metres down, is a zone known as the Trenches. Until recently, scientists did not believe that any creatures existed here, but have now discovered animals like colossal squid and giant worms.

I'm off to scrub me deck, bucko. Fair winds for now! 

Increase your knowledge by completing these activities.

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1. THE DEEPEST POINT IN THE OCEAN IS NEARLY 11,000 METRES BELOW SURFACE AND IS LOCATED OFF THE COAST OF JAPAN
2. OCEAN WATERS ARE WARMEST AROUND THE EQUATOR AND TROPICS, AND COLDEST AROUND THE NORTH AND SOUTH POLES

3. SEAWATER IS MADE UP OF SALT AND 86 OTHER CHEMICAL ELEMENTS