A Rainbow of Sea Creatures to Get You Excited for Spring

These ocean dwellers prove that our ocean is in full bloom year-round

Spring is just around the corner, and I don’t know about you, but I couldn’t be more excited. One of the most vibrantly-colored seasons of them all, springtime has always been one of my favorite times of the year. Flower buds start blooming, the weather becomes slowly sunnier and an overall sense of fresh starts seem to blanket the land.

As I thought about how much I loved springtime on land, though, I couldn’t help but be reminded that there’s one place where some resident species are vibrant year-round: our ocean, of course! In celebration of these bright and colorful sea creatures, dive in and learn about five species that I happen to believe are truly reflective of the springtime spirit.

Who doesn’t love green sea turtles?

153-Green Sea Turtle In Barbados_Christian Martinez

While their shells take on an olive to brown color that happens to look stunning in the sunlight, green sea turtles are actually named for the greenish tint to their skin. They’re also the only sea turtle species to be strict plant eaters as adults, which may explain that unique green tint.

Orange you glad we included this species?

Garibaldi Adam Martin Los Angeles

These vibrant, kelp-loving fish are garibaldi, very often found in waters off of southern California. This photo, in fact, was photographed in waters just off of Los Angeles.

Now that is what we call a bountiful ocean bouquet!


Newly-bloomed spring flowers are certainly beautiful, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find an arrangement as vibrant and intricate as this coral rainbow. Did you know coral reefs are noted to serve as key habitat for nearly a quarter of all ocean species? They’re found in both warm tropical waters and the cold depths of places like the Arctic. Colorful and critical, of course!

Oh, those nudibranchs, always stealing the show…

gasflames nudibranch_peetj_vaneeden

This stunning photo features what’s known as a gas flame nudibranch. As you can probably tell, this critter’s name comes from its appearance being very reminiscent of an open gas flame. Regardless, its fiery look certainly gets me excited for bonfires in the late spring!

Spotted: An itsy bitsy teenie weenie (sort of yellow in this lighting with red polka dots) crustacean!

Coral Crab

This crustacean is a coral crab and, as their name suggests, they dwell amongst our ocean’s diverse reef ecosystems in a symbiotic relationship with resident corals. They’re sometimes referred to as “guard crabs” because they help protect the corals from potential predators.

No matter where you look within our ocean, vividly colorful creatures are waiting around every corner to share a dose of wonder. If you haven’t yet, be sure to join our email list to make sure you’re the first to know about all the latest and greatest discoveries, conservation efforts and advocacy campaigns launched by Ocean Conservancy to protect our incredibly biodiverse blue planet and the wildlife that depend on our ocean.

Browse Topics
Our work is focused on solving some of the greatest threats facing our ocean today. We bring people, science and policy together to champion innovative solutions and fight for a sustainable ocean.
Read more
View Current Posts
Back to Top Up Arrow