Pinnacles National Park
Pinnacles is managed by the National Park Service and the majority of the park is protected as wilderness. The national park is divided by the formations into East and West Divisions, connected by foot trails. The east side has shade and water, the west has high walls, the rock formations provide for spectacular pinnacles that attract rock climbers. The park features unusual talus caves that house at least thirteen species of bat, Pinnacles is most often visited in spring or fall because of the intense heat during the summer months. Park lands are prime habitat for prairie falcons, and are a site for California condors that have been hatched in captivity. Pinnacles National Monument was established in 1908 by U. S. President Theodore Roosevelt, Pinnacles National Park was created from the former Pinnacles National Monument by legislation passed by Congress in late 2012 and signed into law by President Barack Obama on January 10,2013. Native Americans in the Pinnacles region comprised the Chalon and Mutsun groups of the Ohlone people and these native people declined with the arrival of the Spanish in the 18th century, who brought novel diseases and changes to the natives way of life.
The last Chalon had died or departed from the area by 1810, from 1810 to 1865, when the first Anglo-American settlers arrived, the Pinnacles region was a wilderness without human use or habitation. The establishment of a Spanish mission at Soledad hastened the areas native depopulation through disease, archaeological surveys have found thirteen sites inhabited by Native Americans, twelve of which post-date the establishment of the missions. One site is believed to be about 2000 years old, by the 1880s the Pinnacles, known as the Palisades, were visited by picnickers from the surrounding communities who would explore the caves and camp. The first account of the Pinnacles region appeared in print in 1881, between 1889 and 1891, newspaper articles shifted from describing excursions to the Palisades to calling them the Pinnacles. Interest in the rose to the point that the Hollister Free Lance sent a reporter to the Pinnacles. Investors came from San Francisco to consider placing a hotel there. In 1894 a post office was established in Bear Valley, since there was at least one other Bear Valley in California, the post office was named Cook after Mrs.
Hains maiden name. In 1924 the post office was renamed Pinnacles, Schuyler Hain was a homesteader who arrived in the Pinnacles area in 1891 from Michigan, following his parents and eight siblings to Bear Valley. White, was a student at Stanford University, and White brought one of his professors to see the Pinnacles in 1893, dr. Gilbert was impressed by the scenery, and his comments inspired Hain to publicize the region. Hain led tours to Bear Valley and through the caves, advocating the preservation of the Pinnacles, Hains efforts resulted in a 1904 visit by Stanford president David Starr Jordan, who contacted Fresno Congressman James C. Jordan and Needham in turn influenced Gifford Pinchot to advocate the establishment of the Pinnacles Forest Reserve to President Theodore Roosevelt, Roosevelt proclaimed the establishment on July 8,1906
Point Reyes National Seashore
Point Reyes National Seashore is a 71, 028-acre park preserve located on the Point Reyes Peninsula in Marin County, California. As a national seashore, it is maintained by the US National Park Service as an important nature preserve, some existing agricultural uses are allowed to continue within the park. All of the beaches were listed as the cleanest in the state in 2010. The fact that the peninsula is on a different tectonic plate than the east shore of Tomales Bay produces a difference in soils and therefore to some extent a noticeable difference in vegetation. The even smaller town of Olema, about 3 miles south of Point Reyes Station, serves as the gateway to the Seashore and its visitor center, the peninsula includes wild coastal beaches and headlands and uplands. The Seashore administers the parts of the Golden Gate National Recreation area, such as the Olema Valley, the northernmost part of the peninsula is maintained as a reserve for Tule Elk, which are readily seen there. The preserve is very rich in raptors and shorebirds.
The Point Reyes Lighthouse attracts whale-watchers looking for the Gray Whale migrating south in mid-January, the Point Reyes Lifeboat Station is a National Historic Landmark. It is the last remaining example of a rail launched lifeboat station that was common on the Pacific coast and this encompasses 5,965 acres along the coast of Drakes Bay. Kule Loklo, a recreated Coast Miwok village, is a walk from the visitor center. The Point Reyes National Seashore attracts 2.5 million visitors annually, hostelling International USA maintains a 45-bed youth hostel at the Seashore. Point Reyes National Seashore Association, formed in 1964, collaborates with the Seashore on maintenance, like underwater parks, these marine protected areas help conserve ocean wildlife and marine ecosystems. A large shellfish farm raising Japanese oysters, Crassostrea gigas, was located in Drakes Estero until, under court order, Court appeals to keep the operation in place were dropped in December,2014. The farm was purchased by the National Park Service in 1972, a federal law enacted in 2009 authorized, but did not require, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to renew the permit.
The NPS and conservation groups viewed the farm as an inappropriate and environmentally-insensitive use of the estero, the farms supporters argued that it was not ecologically harmful and was important to the local economy. Salazar visited the farm the previous week and phoned the farms owner to give him the news. The oyster farm closure was challenged in U. S. District Court on January 25,2013, the challenge was rejected by a federal court judge, who ruled that the law gave Salazar unfettered discretion to approve or deny a renewal of the permit. The California Coastal Commission voted on February 7,2013 to unanimously approve cease and desist, an attempt to have the appeals court rehear the case was rejected on January 14,2014 and a petition to the United States Supreme Court was denied on June 30,2014
Lava Beds National Monument
Lava Beds National Monument is located in northeastern California, in Siskiyou and Modoc counties. The Monument lies on the flank of the Medicine Lake Volcano. The region in and around Lava Beds Monument lies at the junction of the Sierra-Klamath, the Monument was established as a United States National Monument on November 21,1925, and includes more than 46,000 acres. Lava Beds National Monument has numerous lava tube caves, with twenty-five having marked entrances and developed trails for public access, the monument offers trails through the high Great Basin xeric shrubland desert landscape and the volcanic field. 1872–1873, this area was the site of the Modoc War, the area of Captain Jacks Stronghold was named in his honor. Volcanic eruptions on the Medicine Lake shield volcano have created a rugged landscape punctuated by these many landforms of volcanism. Cinder cones are formed when magma is under great pressure and it is released in a fountain of lava, blown into the air from a central vent.
The lava cools as it falls, forming cinders that pile up around the vent, when the pressure has been relieved, the rest of the lava flows from the base of the cone. Cinder cones typically only erupt once, the cinder cones of Hippo Butte, Three Sisters, Juniper Butte, and Crescent Butte are all older than the Mammoth and Modoc Crater flows, more than 30, 000–40,000 years old. Eagle Nest Butte and Bearpaw Butte are 114,000 years old, Schonchin Butte cinder cone and the andesitic flow from its base were formed around 62,000 years ago. The flow that formed Valentine Cave erupted 10,850 years ago, an eruption that formed The Castles is younger than the Mammoth Crater flows. Even younger were eruptions from Fleener Chimneys, such as the Devils Homestead flow,10,500 years ago, about 1,110 years ago, plus or minus 60 years, the Callahan flow was produced by an eruption from Cinder Butte. Though Cinder Butte is just outside the boundary of the monument, spatter cones are built out of thicker lava. The lava is thrown out of the vent and builds, layer by layer, Fleener Chimneys and Black Crater are examples of spatter cones.
Roughly ninety percent of the lava in the Lava Beds Monument is basaltic, there are primarily two kinds of basaltic lava flows, pahoehoe and aa. Pahoehoe is smooth, often ropy and is the most common type of lava in Lava Beds, aa is formed when pahoehoe cools and loses some of its gases. Aa is rough and jagged, an excellent example is the Devils Homestead lava flow, most of the rest of the lava in the monument is andesitic. Pumice, a type of lava, is found covering the monument
Muir Woods National Monument
Muir Woods National Monument is a unit of the National Park Service on Mount Tamalpais near the Pacific coast, in southwestern Marin County, California. It is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, and is 12 miles north of San Francisco and it protects 554 acres, of which 240 acres are old growth coast redwood forests, one of a few such stands remaining in the San Francisco Bay Area. The Muir Woods National Monument is an old-growth coastal redwood forest, due to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean, the forest is regularly shrouded in a coastal marine layer fog, contributing to a wet environment that encourages vigorous plant growth. The fog is vital for the growth of the redwoods as they use moisture from the fog during droughty seasons, the monument is cool and moist year round with average daytime temperatures between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Rainfall is heavy during the winter and summers are almost completely dry with the exception of fog drip caused by the fog passing through the trees.
Annual precipitation in the ranges from 39.4 inches in the lower valley to 47.2 inches higher up in the mountain slopes. The redwoods grow on brown humus-rich loam which may be gravelly and this soil has been assigned to the Centissima series, which is always found on sloping ground. It is well drained, moderately deep, and slightly to moderately acidic and it has developed from a mélange in the Franciscan Formation. More open areas of the park have shallow gravelly loam of the Barnabe series, one hundred and fifty million years ago ancestors of redwood and sequoia trees grew throughout the United States. Today, the Sequoia sempervirens can be only in a narrow, cool coastal belt from Monterey, California. Before the logging industry came to California, there were an estimated 2 million acres of old growth forest containing redwoods growing in a strip along the coast. By the early 20th century, most of these forests had been cut down, just north of the San Francisco Bay, one valley named Redwood Canyon remained uncut, mainly due to its relative inaccessibility.
He and his wife, Elizabeth Thacher Kent, purchased 611 acres of land from the Tamalpais Land and Water Company for $45,000 with the goal of protecting the redwoods and the mountain above them. In 1907, a company in nearby Sausalito planned to dam Redwood Creek. When Kent objected to the plan, the company threatened to use eminent domain. Kent sidestepped the water companys plot by donating 295 acres of the redwood forest to the federal government, on January 9,1908, President Theodore Roosevelt declared the land a National Monument, the first to be created from land donated by a private individual. President Roosevelt agreed, writing back, MY DEAR MR, responding to some photographs of Muir Woods that Mr. Kent had sent him, Those are awfully good photos. Kent and Muir had become friends over shared views of wilderness preservation, in December 1928, the Kent Memorial was erected at the Kent Tree in Fern Canyon
The intertidal zone, known as the foreshore and seashore and sometimes referred to as the littoral zone, is the area that is above water at low tide and under water at high tide. This area can include different types of habitats, with many types of animals, such as starfish, sea urchins. The well-known area includes rocky cliffs, sandy beaches. The area can be a strip, as in Pacific islands that have only a narrow tidal range. Organisms in the zone are adapted to an environment of harsh extremes. The intertidal zone is home to many several species from different taxa including Porifera, Coelenterates, crustaceans, Arthropods. Water is available regularly with the tides but varies from fresh with rain to highly saline, wave splash can dislodge residents from the littoral zone. With the intertidal zones high exposure to the sun, the range can be anything from very hot with full sun to near freezing in colder climates. Some microclimates in the zone are ameliorated by local features. Adaptation in the littoral zone allows the use of nutrients supplied in high volume on a basis from the sea.
Edges of habitats, in this land and sea, are themselves often significant ecologies. Along most shores, the zone can be clearly separated into the following subzones, high tide zone, middle tide zone. The intertidal zone is one of a number of biomes or habitats, including estuaries, surface. Marine biologists divide the region into three zones, based on the overall average exposure of the zone. The low intertidal zone, which borders on the shallow subtidal zone, is exposed to air at the lowest of low tides and is primarily marine in character. The mid intertidal zone is exposed and submerged by average tides. The high intertidal zone is covered by the highest of the high tides. The high intertidal zone borders on the splash zone, on shores exposed to heavy wave action, the intertidal zone will be influenced by waves, as the spray from breaking waves will extend the intertidal zone
San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park
The San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park is located in San Francisco, United States. The park includes a fleet of vessels, a visitor center, a maritime museum. The park is referred to as the San Francisco Maritime Museum. Todays San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park was authorized in 1988, the park incorporates the Aquatic Park Historic District, bounded by Van Ness Avenue, Polk Street, and Hyde Street. The historic fleet of the San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park is moored at the parks Hyde Street Pier, the fleet consists of the following major vessels, Balclutha, an 1886 built square rigged sailing ship. Eureka, an 1890 built steam ferryboat, alma, an 1891 built scow schooner. Hercules, a 1907 built steam tug, eppleton Hall, a 1914 built paddlewheel tug. The fleet includes one hundred small craft. The Visitor Center is housed in the parks 1909 waterfront warehouse, located at the corner of Hyde, the City of San Francisco declared the four-story brick structure an historic landmark in 1974, and the building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.
Inside, exhibits tell the story of San Francisco’s colorful and diverse maritime heritage, the visitor center contains a theater and a ranger-staffed information desk. The building was built by the WPA as a public bathhouse. The architects were William Mooser Jr. and William Mooser III, the third-floor gallery is used for visiting exhibitions and in 2005 exhibited Sparks, an exhibition of shipboard radio and radioteletype technology. The Maritime Museum has re-opened after a series of renovations, the Maritime Research Center is the premier resource for San Francisco and Pacific Coast maritime history. Originating in 1939, the collections have become the largest maritime collection on the West Coast, one of these is the San Francisco Maritime National Park Association. The Visitors Center, Hyde Street Pier and Maritime Museum are all situated adjacent to the foot of Hyde Street, the park headquarters and Maritime Research Center are located in Fort Mason, some 10 minutes walk to the west of the other sites.
Opening times and fees for the sites can be found on the parks website. Aquatic Park is a place for open water swimming, both for recreation and training. The South End Rowing Club and Dolphin Club are located in Aquatic Park, WPA murals and sculpture at Aquatic Park — The New Deal Art Registry
Monterey Bay is a bay of the Pacific Ocean located on the coast of the U. S. state of California. The bay is south of the cities of San Francisco. The county-seat city of Santa Cruz is located at the end of the bay. The city of Monterey is on the Monterey Peninsula at the south end, the Monterey Bay Area is a local colloquialism sometimes used to describe the whole of the Central Coast communities of Santa Cruz and Monterey counties. The first European to discover Monterey Bay was Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo on November 16,1542 while sailing northward along the coast on a Spanish naval expedition. He named the bay Bahía de los Pinos, probably because of the forest of pine trees first encountered while rounding the peninsula at the end of the bay. Cabrillos name for the bay was lost, but the westernmost point of the peninsula is known as Point Pinos. On December 10,1595, Sebastián Rodríguez Cermeño crossed the bay, the present name for the bay was documented in 1602 by Sebastián Vizcaíno, who had been tasked by the Spanish government to complete a detailed chart of the coast.
He anchored in what is now the Monterey harbor on December 16, Monterrey is an alternate spelling of Monterrei, a municipality in the Galicia region of Spain from which the viceroy and his father originated. All other place names in the vicinity containing Monterey were so named because of their proximity to the bay and this includes the Presidio of Monterey, City of Monterey, County of Monterey and Monterey Canyon. The Monterey Canyon, one of the largest underwater canyons in the world, begins off the coast of Moss Landing, killer whales are found along the coast, especially when Gray whales migrate, as they hunt the whales during their migration north. Many species of fish, mollusks such as abalone and squid, several varieties of kelp grow in the bay, some becoming as tall as trees, forming what is known as a kelp forest. Ricketts State Marine Conservation Area and Asilomar State Marine Reserve are marine protected areas in Monterey Bay, like underwater parks, these marine protected areas help conserve ocean wildlife and marine ecosystems.
Clockwise around the bay, generally north to south
The harbor seal, known as the common seal, is a true seal found along temperate and Arctic marine coastlines of the Northern Hemisphere. The most widely distributed species of pinniped, they are found in waters of the northern Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Harbor seals are brown, silvery white, tan, or gray, an adult can attain a length of 1.85 meters and a mass of 132 kilograms. Blubber under the skin helps to maintain body temperature. Harbor seals stick to familiar resting spots or haulout sites, generally rocky areas where they are protected from weather conditions and predation. Males may fight over mates underwater and on land, females bear a single pup after a nine-month gestation, which they care for alone. Pups can weigh up to 16 kg and are able to swim and they develop quickly on their mothers fat-rich milk and are weaned after four to six weeks. The global population of seals is 350, 000–500,000. Once a common practice, sealing is now illegal in many nations within the animals range, individual harbor seals possess a unique pattern of spots, either dark on a light background or light on a dark.
They vary in color from black to tan or grey. The body and flippers are short, heads are rounded, as with other true seals, there is no pinna. An ear canal may be visible behind the eye, including the head and flippers, they may reach an adult length of 1.85 meters and a weight of 55 to 168 kg. Females are generally smaller than males, there are an estimated 350, 000–500,000 harbor seals worldwide. While the population is not threatened as a whole, the Greenland, Hokkaidō, local populations have been reduced or eliminated through disease and conflict with humans, both unintentionally and intentionally. It is legal to kill seals perceived to threaten fisheries in the United Kingdom and Canada, Seals are taken in subsistence hunting and accidentally as bycatch. Along the Norwegian coast bycatch accounted for 48% of pup mortality, Seals in the United Kingdom are protected by the 1970 Conservation of Seals Act, which prohibits most forms of killing. There are five subspecies of Phoca vitulina, Western Atlantic common seals, P. v. concolor, the validity of this subspecies is questionable, and not supported by genetic evidence.
Ungava seals, P. v. mellonae, are found in eastern Canada in fresh water, Pacific common seals, P. v. richardsi, are located in western North America
Monterey was founded in 1770 by missionary Junípero Serra and explorer Gaspar de Portolà. Portolà erected the Presidio of Monterey to defend the port against an expected Russian trading, at the same time, Serra founded Mission San Carlos Borromeo, second in the chain of Spanish Missions of California. Originally near the presidio, the moved a few miles south to its current location in Carmel. Monterey served as the capital of upper Las Californias and Alta California from 1777 to 1848, under the flags of Spain, independent Mexico, the city was originally the only port of entry for taxable goods in California. All shipments into California by sea were required to go through the Custom House, the oldest governmental building in the state, and Californias Historic Landmark Number One. Built in 3 phases, construction on the Custom House began in 1814 under the Spanish, Monterey was the site of the July 7,1846, Battle of Monterey during the Mexican-American War. It was on this date that John D. Sloat, Commodore in the United States Navy, raised the U. S.
flag over the Monterey Custom House, in addition, many California firsts occurred in Monterey. These include Californias first theater, brick house, publicly funded school, public building, public library, and printing press, which printed The Californian, Colton Hall, built in 1849 by Walter Colton, was originally a public school and government meeting place. It hosted Californias first constitutional convention, today it houses a museum, while adjacent buildings serve as the seat of local government. The Monterey post office opened in 1849, the city has a noteworthy history as a center for California painters in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Such painters as Arthur Frank Mathews, Armin Hansen, Xavier Martinez, Rowena Meeks Abdy, in November 1995, California Governor Pete Wilson proclaimed Monterey as The Language Capital of the World. Pacific Grove was founded in 1875 by a group of Methodists who modeled the town after Ocean Grove, in time, the butterflies, fragrant pines and fresh sea air brought others to the Pacific Grove Retreat to rest and meditate.
The initial meeting of the Pacific Coast branch of the Chautauqua Literary, modelled after the Methodist Sunday school teachers’ training camp established in 1874 at Lake Chautauqua, N. Y. this location became part of a nationwide educational network. In November 1879, after the summer campers returned home, Robert Louis Stevenson wandered into the deserted campgrounds, indeed, it was not so much like a deserted town as like a scene upon the stage by daylight, and with no one on the boards. Today, Stevenson School in nearby Pebble Beach is named after the author, the Pacific Grove post office opened in 1886, closed that year, and was re-opened in 1887. Pacific Grove, like Carmel-by-the-Sea and Monterey, became a haven in the 1890s. Artists of the En plein air school in both Europe and the United States were seeking a venue which had natural beauty, so that Pacific Grove was a magnet for this movement. English painter William Adam and other artists moved to Pacific Grove in the early 1900s, for a number of years, John Steinbeck lived in a cottage in Pacific Grove owned by his father, who was Monterey County Treasurer
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite National Park is a national park spanning portions of Tuolumne and Madera counties in Northern California. The park, which is managed by the National Park Service, on average, about 4 million people visit Yosemite each year, and most spend the majority of their time in the seven square miles of Yosemite Valley. The park set a record in 2016, surpassing 5 million visitors for the first time in its history. Almost 95% of the park is designated wilderness, Yosemite was central to the development of the national park idea. First, Galen Clark and others lobbied to protect Yosemite Valley from development, Yosemite is one of the largest and least fragmented habitat blocks in the Sierra Nevada, and the park supports a diversity of plants and animals. The park has a range from 2,127 to 13,114 feet and contains five major vegetation zones, chaparral/oak woodland, lower montane forest, upper montane forest, subalpine zone. Of Californias 7,000 plant species, about 50% occur in the Sierra Nevada, there is suitable habitat for more than 160 rare plants in the park, with rare local geologic formations and unique soils characterizing the restricted ranges many of these plants occupy.
The geology of the Yosemite area is characterized by granitic rocks, about 10 million years ago, the Sierra Nevada was uplifted and tilted to form its relatively gentle western slopes and the more dramatic eastern slopes. The uplift increased the steepness of stream and river beds, resulting in formation of deep, about one million years ago and ice accumulated, forming glaciers at the higher alpine meadows that moved down the river valleys. Ice thickness in Yosemite Valley may have reached 4,000 feet during the early glacial episode, the downslope movement of the ice masses cut and sculpted the U-shaped valley that attracts so many visitors to its scenic vistas today. The name Yosemite originally referred to the name of a tribe which was driven out of the area by the Mariposa Battalion. Before the area was called Ahwahnee by indigenous people, as revealed by archeological finds, the Yosemite Valley has been inhabited for nearly 3,000 years, though humans may have first visited the area as long as 8,000 to 10,000 years ago.
The indigenous natives called themselves the Ahwahneechee, meaning dwellers in Ahwahnee and they are related to the Northern Paiute and Mono tribes. Many tribes visited the area to trade, including nearby Central Sierra Miwoks, a major trading route went over Mono Pass and through Bloody Canyon to Mono Lake, just to the east of the Yosemite area. Vegetation and game in the region were similar to that present today, acorns were a staple to their diet, as well as seeds and plants, salmon. In 1851 as part of the Mariposa Wars intended to suppress Native American resistance and he was pursuing forces of around 200 Ahwahneechee led by Chief Tenaya. Accounts from this battalion were the first well-documented reports of ethnic Europeans entering Yosemite Valley, attached to Savages unit was Dr. Lafayette Bunnell, the company physician, who wrote about his awestruck impressions of the valley in The Discovery of the Yosemite. Bunnell is credited with naming Yosemite Valley, based on his interviews with Chief Tenaya, Bunnell wrote that Chief Tenaya was the founder of the Pai-Ute Colony of Ah-wah-nee
Remotely operated underwater vehicle
A remotely operated underwater vehicle is a tethered underwater mobile device. This meaning is different from remote control vehicles operating on land or in the air, ROVs are unoccupied, highly maneuverable, and operated by a crew aboard a vessel. They are common in deep water industries such as offshore hydrocarbon extraction, the TMS is either a garage-like device which contains the ROV during lowering through the splash zone or, on larger work-class ROVs, a separate assembly which sits on top of the ROV. The purpose of the TMS is to lengthen and shorten the tether so the effect of cable drag where there are underwater currents is minimized. The umbilical cable is a cable that contains a group of electrical conductors and fiber optics that carry electric power, video. Where used, the TMS relays the signals and power for the ROV down the tether cable, once at the ROV, the electric power is distributed between the components of the ROV. However, in applications, most of the electric power drives a high-power electric motor which drives a hydraulic pump.
The pump is used for propulsion and to power equipment such as torque tools. Most ROVs are equipped with at least a camera and lights. Additional equipment is added to expand the vehicle’s capabilities. In the 1970s and 80s the Royal Navy used Cutlet, a remotely operated submersible, RCA maintained the Cutlet 02 System based at BUTEC ranges, whilst the 03 system was based at the submarine base on the Clyde and was operated and maintained by RN personnel. The U. S. Navy funded most of the early ROV technology development in the 1960s into what was named a Cable-Controlled Underwater Recovery Vehicle. This created the capability to perform deep-sea rescue operation and recover objects from the ocean floor, building on this technology base, the offshore oil & gas industry created the work-class ROVs to assist in the development of offshore oil fields. More than a decade after they were first introduced, ROVs became essential in the 1980s when much of the new offshore development exceeded the reach of human divers.
During the mid-1980s the marine ROV industry suffered from serious stagnation in development caused in part by a drop in the price of oil. Since then, technological development in the ROV industry has accelerated and their tasks range from simple inspection of subsea structures and platforms, to connecting pipelines and placing underwater manifolds. They are used both in the initial construction of a sub-sea development and the subsequent repair and maintenance. Submersible ROVs have been used to locate many historic shipwrecks, including the RMS Titanic, the Bismarck, USS Yorktown, and SS Central America
The sea otter is a marine mammal native to the coasts of the northern and eastern North Pacific Ocean. Adult sea otters typically weigh between 14 and 45 kg, making them the heaviest members of the family. Unlike most marine mammals, the sea otters primary form of insulation is a thick coat of fur. Although it can walk on land, the sea otter lives mostly in the ocean, the sea otter inhabits offshore environments, where it dives to the sea floor to forage. It preys mostly on invertebrates such as sea urchins, various molluscs and crustaceans. Its foraging and eating habits are noteworthy in several respects, its use of rocks to dislodge prey and to open shells makes it one of the few mammal species to use tools. In most of its range, it is a keystone species and its diet includes prey species that are valued by humans as food, leading to conflicts between sea otters and fisheries. For these reasons, the sea otter remains classified as an endangered species, the first scientific description of the sea otter is contained in the field notes of Georg Steller from 1751, and the species was described by Linnaeus in his Systema Naturae of 1758.
Originally named Lutra marina, it underwent numerous changes before being accepted as Enhydra lutris in 1922. The generic name Enhydra, derives from the Ancient Greek en/εν in and hydra/ύδρα water, meaning in the water, the sea otter was formerly sometimes referred to as the sea beaver, being the marine fur-bearer similar in commercial value to the terrestrial beaver. Rodents are not closely related to otters, which are carnivores and it is not to be confused with the marine otter, a rare otter species native to the southern west coast of South America. A number of other species, while predominantly living in fresh water, are commonly found in marine coastal habitats. The extinct sea mink of northeast North America is another mustelid that had adapted to a marine environment, the sea otter is the heaviest member of the family Mustelidae, a diverse group that includes the 13 otter species and terrestrial animals such as weasels and minks. It is unique among the mustelids in not making dens or burrows, in having no functional anal scent glands, and in being able to live its entire life without leaving the water.
The only member of the genus Enhydra, the sea otter is so different from other species that, as recently as 1982. Fossil evidence indicates the Enhydra lineage became isolated in the North Pacific approximately 2 Mya, giving rise to the now-extinct Enhydra macrodonta and the modern sea otter, Enhydra lutris. The sea otter evolved initially in northern Hokkaidō and Russia, and spread east to the Aleutian Islands, mainland Alaska, and down the North American coast. In comparison to cetaceans and pinnipeds, which entered the water approximately 50,40, and 20 Mya, the sea otter is a relative newcomer to a marine existence