Hurricanes

Streaked shearwater (Calonectris leucomelas) sitting on a rock in on Mikura Island in Japan. 

To Survive a Typhoon, Some Seabirds Fly Straight Into It

Streaked shearwaters will face a storm's high winds rather than risk getting blown to land

Sarasota, Florida, experienced wind and rain on Wednesday morning as Hurrican Ian approached. 

Hurricane Ian Slams Cuba, Heads for Florida’s West Coast

The storm approached Florida as a Category 4 hurricane, with top winds reaching 155 miles per hour

Bad Bunny, a global reggaeton sensation whose latest album just topped the Billboard 200 for the 11th week, released a short documentary on Puerto Rico’s infrastructure failures and gentrification.

Bad Bunny's Latest Music Video Doubles as a Documentary on Gentrification in Puerto Rico

Amid Hurricane Fiona, the artist combines his music with an 18-minute film by reporter Bianca Graulau

A flooded road in Villa Blanca, Puerto Rico, on Sept. 18, 2022 due to Hurricane Fiona. 

Hurricane Fiona Causes 'Catastrophic' Damage in Puerto Rico

The island faces major blackouts, and it could be several days before all the lights are back on

Many of the children who survived Hurricane Katrina are still healing from the trauma of their experiences.

The Black Children of Hurricane Katrina Finally Tell Their Stories

A new documentary, 'Katrina Babies,' spotlights the disaster's youngest survivors

Birds that wander out of their home ranges can be an unexpected source of revenue. Stella, a Steller’s sea eagle, recently turned up in Maine and Massachusetts, drawing tourists who spent nearly US $500,000.

Birds Wandering Far From Home Can Be a Boon for Local Tourism

When an internet-famous Steller’s sea eagle turned up roughly 11,000 kilometers off course in late 2021, birders flocked to catch a glimpse

A firefighter battles a wildfire near Zamora, northern Spain, on July 18, 2022 during an extreme heat wave in Europe. 

'Zoe' Becomes the World’s First Named Heat Wave

Seville, Spain has implemented a new heat wave naming system to raise awareness of these “silent killers”

Quebec’s Magdalen Islands in the Gulf of St. Lawrence are at the mercy of rising sea levels and increasing storm surges. The fragile dunes, lagoons, marshes, and sandstone cliffs are all at risk of being lost.

The Sea Is Slowly Consuming Quebec's Magdalen Islands

Those living in the doomed paradise face a stark choice: resist, adapt, or give in to the ravenous ocean

Blue holes, like the Great Blue Hole in Belize, are vast caverns that descend into the seafloor. Sediment accumulates at the bottom of a blue hole, giving researchers a way to gauge historical hurricane activity.

Blue Holes Show Hurricane Activity in the Bahamas Is at a Centuries-Long Low

Many more powerful storms battered the region in the past

Hurricane Nora off the coast of Mexico and Hurricane Ida gaining strength in the Gulf of Mexico on August 28, 2021.

NOAA Predicts Another Busy Hurricane Season This Year

2022 will likely be the seventh consecutive year of above-average hurricane activity

Some 1,500 rhesus macaques live a mile off the eastern shore of Puerto Rico on Cayo Santiago.

Puerto Rico

The Puerto Rican Island Where 1,500 Monkeys Rule

The Caribbean Primate Research Center on Monkey Island is one of the world’s top institutions for studying primate behavior

This mural outside of an outfitter's office illustrates the snaking mouth of Mosquito Bay.

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico's Bioluminescent Bays Are Brighter Than Ever

The nightly light shows have rebounded from Hurricane Maria's devastating blow

Anyone who drives the stretch from Miami to Key West is bound to be mystified by the ghostly remains of an early 20th-century railway.

In the Florida Keys, a Century-Old Bridge Reopens as a Tropical High Line

A portion of the Seven Mile Bridge, an engineering marvel completed in 1909, has been transformed into a linear park

A humpback whale and her calf swim underwater. A recent study in Nature found whales eat and poop way more than previously thought—and that feces plays an important role in fertilizing the ocean.

The Top Ten Ocean Stories of 2021

From the discovery of a large bioluminescent shark to the use of an innovative drone to study hurricanes, these are the best marine stories of the year

NOAA and Saildrone deployed the fleet of five hurricane-class vessels in the Atlantic’s “hurricane belt” in the summer months leading up to this year’s tropical storm season. 

 

Innovation for Good

'Saildrone' Captures First-Ever Video From Inside a Category 4 Hurricane

This uncrewed, remote-controlled vessel gathered valuable scientific data that could help researchers better understand and predict these violent storms

Natural disasters do not destroy buildings evenly. By studying which fall and which are left standing, engineers can develop new strategies for the future.

When a Natural Disaster Hits, Structural Engineers Learn From the Destruction

StEER engineers assess why some buildings survive hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, and why others do not

A dozen rat carcasses with upturned bellies were found littered along the sand in Brooklyn's Canarsie Park.

Rat Carcasses Wash Ashore in New York City After Hurricane Ida

Flood waters from record rainfall overwhelmed the rodents and forced them out of their homes

Researchers with the Kivi Kuaka project are tagging a variety of Pacific birds, hoping they will reveal differences in their capacity to detect and respond to dangerous storms and tsunamis.

Can Birds Tip Us Off to Natural Disasters?

Researchers think birds can hear hurricanes and tsunamis—a sense they’re hoping to tap into to develop a bird-based early warning system

Two original slave cabins, as well as the 1790 Big House, 1790 barn and 19th-century kitchen, survived the storm. But Ida destroyed at least several structures on the historic plantation.

Hurricane Ida Damages Whitney Plantation, Only Louisiana Museum to Focus on the Enslaved

The historic site will remain closed indefinitely as staff assess the destruction and make repairs

Smithsonian Voices

How the Smithsonian Collected Artifacts That Told the Story of Hurricane Katrina

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