Stunning Sea Life Photography Celebrates World Wildlife Day

blenny fish
A variable blenny in south Devon. They vary in color | Dan Bolt

The Marine Conversation Society has compiled a series of stunning photographs to mark World Wildlife Day today.

Taken from around the shores of the United Kingdom, the pictures feature basking sharks, wolffish, and hermit crabs.

“While the images below show the colorful and curious world under the surface of the U.K.’s seas, these fragile ecosystems are in urgent need of protection and restoration,” writes the Marine Conversation Society. “Without a healthy ocean, we cannot have a healthy planet.”

A pair of wolffish in the Berwickshire marine reserve. Wolffish usually live single lives but this photographer spotted five pairs nesting together | Kirsty Andrews
A curled octopus off the Shetland Islands. The photographer who captured the photo said: ” Being quite sheltered and having lots of prey available for them, this site is a hotspot for curled octopus. It was already watching me when I finally noticed its presence, which is nearly always the case with these masters of camouflage. The plumose anemones which carpet the seabed in patches make it a very special place.”
A firework anemone that can have a stalk and tentacles of up to 11 inches (30cm) long | Dan Bolt
An edible crab in the Berwickshire marine reseve | Georgie Bull
hermit crab
Hermit crab covererd in other molluscs | Kirsty Andrew
An anglerfish in Chesil Cove, Dorset. The photographer describes it as “undistinguishable” from the rocky, weed-strewn ground | Jon Bunker
A common sunstar in a kelp forest, Scotland | Billy Arthur
john dory fish
A John Dory fish checking himself out in the photographer’s glass | Georgie Bull
basking shark
Split shot of a basking shark in the Isle of Coll, Scotland | Mark Kirkland
A compass jellyfish in Cornwall | Martin Stevens
bobtail squid
A bobtail squid in Loch Long | Mark Kirkland

The Marine Conservation Society says that it fights for cleaner, better-protected, healthier seas. Campaigning for improved laws to protect the ocean and the charity hopes to shine a light on its wild and wonderful inhabitants.

World Wildlife Day is a United Nations International day to celebrate all the world’s wild animals and plants and the contribution that they make to the health of the planet.