Atlantic Ocean Life Brief

Atlantic Ocean life is only a small portion of the five oceans that cover approximately two-thirds of the Earth’s surface. There is a lot of open water and a lot of ocean life.  At 60 million square miles, the Pacific Ocean is the largest. The Atlantic Ocean is next, with an area of 29,630,000 square miles. The geographic coordinates are 0 00 N, 25 00 W, with the ocean ranging from Africa, Europe, the Southern Ocean, and the Western Hemisphere.

The Atlantic includes several bodies as water, such as the Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea, Baltic Sea, and Gulf of Mexico.


General Information

The Atlantic is split into shallow and deep waters, with an incredible variety of ocean life, marine animals and mammals living within its confines. Before the deep drop from the continental shelf, the water is shallow. Atlantic ocean life includes familiar creatures like shrimps, crabs, and clams. Rocks and reefs provide a habitat for corals and sponges. Squid and octopus swim through the water with eels and fish. Larger animals, such as dolphins and walrus, rely on these smaller creatures for their food supply.

The deep portion beyond the continental shelf is cold and dark. Two requirements exist: survive without light and have the strength to withstand the water’s pressure. Those living on the sea bed receive food drifting from above or feed on Atlantic ocean life in the form of small creatures. Large creatures like dolphins and whales that live on or near the surface, eat plankton and krill.


The Natural Swimmer

What does it take to qualify as a natural swimmer in the Atlantic? There are two examples that come to mind.

Bottlenose Dolphin

Bottlenose dolphin lives where the surface water is between 50 and 90 degrees F. More prevalent that other dolphin species from Cape Cod through the Gulf of Mexico, the bottlenose is often spotted by tourists on cruise lines sailing along that part of the United States. Seasonal migration between New Jersey and North Carolina also provides views of this natural swimmer.

They can swim for long distances at 3 to 7 mph. Speeds of up to 22 mph last for less than a minute. Designed for swimming, their fusiform shape creates less drag as it moves through the water. Blubber evens the contour, leading to a sleek shape for swimming.

Bottlenose dolphins have a ‘porpoise” move where they swim fast to break free of the water. The motion takes them up, out and back underwater in a continuous movement. Repeating the move several times uses less energy than required to swim the distance on the water’s surface. They also conserve energy is by riding a boat’s wake and ocean swells, travelling twice as fast using less energy.

Cownose Rays

A strong natural swimmer, Cownose rays has an impressive migration system. An example is the migration in the Gulf of Mexico. Schools include up to 10,000 cownose rays that migrate through the Atlantic Ocean clockwise from western Florida to the Yucatan.

Cownose rays are intriguing to watch. Their wingtips frequently break the surface, resembling the dorsal fin of sharks. As they move quickly along, some jump from the water and fall back to land with a loud smack.

Atlantic Ocean Swims

There are a number of Atlantic Ocean swims for the human who wants to be/test their natural swimmer. One of the most recognized requires the same persistence and courage that other Atlantic ocean life displays. The Coney Island Polar Bear Club swims at Coney Island once a week from November through April.

Daily ocean training swims are organized by Coney Island Brighton Beach Open Water Swimmers. Cold water events and one mile races are also part of their activities. Another opportunity exists in the One Mile Open Water Swimming Series, designed for swimmers looking for a manageable swim in the cold Atlantic Ocean, such as the event that took place along with the 10.3km Lighthouse Swim near Cape Town. By practicing techniques in the ocean, humans can build their body up to tackle the longer challenges.


Today's Daily Swimming Workout:

Warm-up:  500 freestyle, 100 breaststroke kick no board, 200 Individual Medley, 100 butterfly kick-on-back, 100 freestyle

10 x 50 alternating freestyle and Backstroke non stop

5 X 100 as odd: 25 kick butterfly, 75 fly; even numbers as 25 backstroke kick, 75 freestyle

Pull:  2 X (100 backstroke, 200 breaststroke, 100 freestyle)

500 freestyle with hand paddles on

10 X 50 alternating breaststroke and freestyle

Warm-down:  200 freestyle

Total:  4500 meters or yards depending on the pool length


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