Journey out to sea and your view may change little from one minute to the next. Take the same journey underwater and it changes from moment to moment.
The seabed is a vast, mostly hidden landscape which extends from our shorelines to the very deepest part of our ocean. Containing a diverse range of habitats, this underwater scene can look very different depending on where you are in the world. Some will contain stretches of sand, rippled by the ocean currents, others have towering giant kelp, rising up to the surface or rocky outcrops, boulders, or even coral reefs.
Descending into the deepest parts of our ocean, the seabed sediments become an ooze, with the occasional super-heated vents or a sea mountain stretching above. The shallowest seabed habitats benefit from the sun’s energy and have an array of vegetation such as seaweeds, seagrasses and mangroves. These provide shelter and food for many marine creatures, starting food chains which go from the tiniest invertebrate up to the fish we eat and even to the giant whales. Seabed habitats are diverse, dynamic places and are vital to life in the ocean.