Marine Ecosystems Archives - Oceana Canada

Eelgrass Beds

Eelgrass looks much like the grass that may grow on your lawn – except that it’s found underwater in brackish and salty environments. The blades, or leaves, of eelgrass are green, about one centimetre wide and can grow to almost a metre long. They grow in clumps in shallow, clear water and are great ecosystem health … Read more


As a result of their steep sides, fjords can reach extreme depths only a few metres from shore. On average, fjords can reach 200 metres in depth, however the deepest fjords on Canada’s west coast are almost 500 metres deep. The long, narrow nature of fjords means that they may extend far inland from the … Read more

Kelp Forests

Kelp thrives in cold, nutrient-rich waters. Since kelp is not actually a plant, it does not have roots. Instead, it obtains all of its minerals and nutrients directly from the water, attaching itself to the rocky bottom by a structure known as a holdfast. Like plants however, kelp harvests the sun’s energy through photosynthesis. In … Read more


Seamounts can be found in every ocean basin in the world. Since they are the product of once-active volcanoes, they are commonly found near the edges of Earth’s tectonic plates or at mid-plate hotspots, which are isolated areas where plumes of lava rise up and erupt through the Earth’s crust onto the seafloor. When tectonic … Read more