15 Fun and Surprising Facts about the Earth’s Oceans

The Earth’s oceans are odd, beautiful and intriguing — and we know surprisingly little about them. Learn why oceans comprise a strange and wonderful world all their own.

| August 1, 2009


The Earth's oceans are full of funny, regal and fantastic organisms and geographic features.

Photo by Fotolia/Derek Broussard

The oceans may make up 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, but we know very little about them, especially compared to our knowledge of the Earth’s land spaces — or even those of Mars and Venus. Consider this: We made it all the way to the moon a full four years before we saw the largest mountain range on Earth, lying below the oceans' surface.

Life in the oceans of this planet, even the very little we know about is unrivaled in its beauty and strangeness. Furthermore, the promise of what it may teach us about the planet we live on stretches the imagination.

To give you an idea of the numerous surprises that dwell in the oceans, and hopefully make you eager to learn more, here are 15 fun tidbits about the awe-inspiring world that lies below the oceans’ surface.

Interesting Ocean Facts

1. For starters, did you know that 94 percent of life on Earth is aquatic? That makes us land-dwellers a very small minority.

2. About 70 percent of the planet is ocean, with an average depth of more than 12,400 feet. Given that photons (light) can’t penetrate more than 330 feet below the water’s surface, most of our planet is in a perpetual state of darkness.

3. Fifty percent of the United States (in terms of our complete legal jurisdiction, which includes ocean territory) lies below the ocean.

8/3/2009 4:53:31 PM

I have two friends who are currently rowing across the North Pacific, from Chosie,Japan to the Golden Gate,San Fransisco, California, (www.goldengateendeavor.com) a distance of about 6000 miles, thrice that of the Atlantic, but it will take 3 or 4 times as long. They are Chris Martin & Mick Dawson and their boats is "Bojangles". They both as mad as hatters! Anybody can follow their progress on line blog. What is amazing is rubbish that they see in the middle of nowhere.

8/3/2009 4:03:10 PM

What an interesting article! I loved all the ocean facts, who knew I would learn that much today! I must admit however, it does make me want to take a beach vacation! Thank you mother earth for the fun filled info!

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