Animals living in the Marine Neritic habitat

The marine environment hosts the majority of life on earth and the ocean zones extend from the intertidal zone to the abyssal plain. The greatest concentration of marine life exists in the neritic zone beginning at the low water mark to the edge of the continental shelf. This oceanic zone is well oxygenated, has stable salinity levels is constantly fertilized by terrestrial runoff and has a great concentration of sunlight penetration. Here, the first step in the food chain, the phytoplankton that is produced by photosynthesis can be found. The phytoplanton along with the zooplankton, from microscopic diatoms to small shrimp and copepods form the basis of oceanic life. The great baleen whales graze on endless pastures of this minute vegetable and animal life.

It is in the neritic zone that the world's fisheries harvest the majority of seafood for human consumption. Salmon, tuna, seabass, snapper and a multitude of other food fish live on either reefs or travel in a pelagic existence. Dolphins and porpoises feed on the plentiful baitfish and sharks patrol these waters in perpetual motion on a constant hunt. For human recreation the neritic zone provides the most sought after gamefish; marlin, sailfish, mahi mahi and tuna are plentiful and bluewater spearfishermen emulate marine mammals with breath hold dives in pursuit of their pelagic prey.

The neritic ocean zone is the cradle of life on earth; it is very fragile and can by no means provide perpetual sustenance under the onslaught of the blossoming human population.


Hooker's sea lion
Northern fur seal
Giant brazilian otter
Sea otter
Northern sealion
Polar bear
North american otter
Marine otter
Common otter
Hairy-nosed otter
African clawless otter
Indian smooth-coated otter
Galapagos islands fur seal
Juan fernández fur seal
Mediterranean monk seal
Hawaiian monk seal
Guadalupe fur seal

Dolphins, porpoises, and whales

Bowhead whale
Black finless porpoise
Common minke whale
Irrawaddy dolphin
Coalfish whale
Killer whale
Bryde's whale
Blue whale
Common porpoise
Black porpoise
Commerson's dolphin
Black dolphin
Benguela dolphin
Estuarine dolphin
Hector's dolphin
Chinese white dolphin
Atlantic dolphin
Atlantic hump-backed dolphin
Bridled dolphin
Atlantic spotted dolphin
Long-beaked dolphin
Devil fish
Southern right whale
Long-finned pilot whale
Bottle-nosed dolphin
Atlantic white-sided dolphin
Blackchin dolphin
North atlantic right whale
Pacific white-sided dolphin
Dusky dolphin
Blind river dolphin


Fish-eating bat

Dugongs, manatees, and sea cows

Amazonian manatee
American manatee
African manatee

Read more at the list of biomes of the world...
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