Plankton float in the ocean by the billions

Most marine animals either start their lives as plankton (e.g. fish, crabs, oysters, corals) or are supported by plankton (e.g. marine mammals, sea birds, and sea turtles). Their shapes can be ethereal and eerie. Many have wild and delicate appendages--ranging from the "gossmer wings" a pteropod uses to propel itself through the water to the wispy tentacles of a siphonophore splays when capturing prey. There is a microscopic world of wonder waiting to be explored. Dive in!