14 marine conservation documentaries to teach you about the ocean.

If you’re a fan of the sea and want to find out more about the ocean, check out our favourite marine life documentaries. 

For Sea Fans

Blue Planet 2 cover

BBC’s Blue Planet 2 showcases rare and unusual creatures from throughout the world’s ocean environments. Discover these creatures’ unique behaviours and find out the problems they face in today’s world.

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For Coral Fans

Watch Chasing Coral - a climate change documentary about the disappearance of coral reefs

Chasing Coral is a race-against-time, underwater campaign to document the disappearance of coral reefs around the world. Coral reefs are vanishing at an alarming rate, and it’s up to the Chasing Coral team to find out why, and bring it to the public’s attention.

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For Whale Fans

Watch Sea of Shadows film

Sea of Shadows puts the spotlight on the race to save the Vaquita, the world’s smallest toothed whale, from extinction against an illegal multi-million-dollar business run by the Mexican cartels and Chinese mafia. Will this tiny whale make it?

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For Dolphin Fans

Watch The Cove - a dolphin documentary

The Cove is a hard-hitting, marine conservation documentary that looks at how dolphins end up in captivity. It follows a group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Ric O’Barry, as they infiltrate a cove near Taijii, Japan. What they find is a shocking instance of animal abuse and a serious threat to human health.

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For Orca Fans

Long Gone Wild - an orca documentary

Long Gone Wild focuses on the plight of captive orcas, picking up where the acclaimed ocean documentary Blackfish left off. While the Asian marine mammal entertainment market is booming, there is a glimmer of hope for captive orcas in the form of a The Whale Sanctuary Project.

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For Whale Shark Fans

Whale Shark

Galapagos: Realm of Giant Sharks is where you will find a growing population of pregnant whale sharks as well as schools of hammerheads. Take a look beneath the waves in this awe-inspiring documentary as a group of scientists get up-close with the world’s largest shark.

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For Shark Fans

Watch Sharkwater Extinction poster

Sharkwater: Extinction is the follow up to Rob Stewart’s hard-hitting shark documentary Sharkwater. Follow Stewart as he exposes the massive illegal shark fin industry and the political corruption behind it.

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For Penguin Fans

Watch March of the Penguins 2

March of the Penguins 2 – The Next Step is the follow up to the original documentary March of the Penguins. This time around the focus is a father and son emperor penguins as they face and overcome unimaginable challenges of life in this remote and dangerous land.

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For Turtle Fans

Watch Why Just One? - a marine conservation documentary about turtles

Why Just One? tells the story of Sea Shepherd’s fight to save sea turtles. It’s a marine conservation documentary that looks at the widely accepted statistic that just one in one thousand sea turtle hatchlings survive to maturity.

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For Fish Fans

Artifishal film poster

Artifishal is a documentary film about people, rivers, and the fight for the future of wild fish and the environment that supports them.

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For Small Critter Fans

Pygmy Seahorse

Mucky Secrets: The Marine Creatures of the Lembeh Strait is an ocean documentary celebrating the smaller creatures in the ocean. It focuses in on the Lembeh Strait, a narrow stretch of sea in Indonesia home to some of the world’s best muck diving. Discover colourful nudibranchs, fantastic frogfish, elegant pipefish, and hundreds of other awesome creatures lurking in the sand.

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For Arctic Fans

Watch Black Ice - the story of the Arctic 30

Black Ice is the true story of the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise. The crew onboard set sail to protest the first ever oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean. Seized at gunpoint by Russian special forces, the ‘Arctic 30’ were thrust into headlines all over the world, facing up to 15 years in prison.

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For Deep Sea Fans

Watch Deepsea challenge - a deep sea documentary

In James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenge, you join Cameron on his journey to the deepest part of the ocean, the Mariana Trench.

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For Ocean Conservation Fans

Watch A Plastic Ocean documentary

A Plastic Ocean examines the terrifying impact plastic is having on our ocean and the marine animals that live there. It also proposes positive solutions that can be implemented immediately.

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Discover more ocean conservation documentaries

You can find more documentaries about the ocean on Sea Fans. Let us know what your favourite is in the comments below, and if there are any we should add.

Or why not discover more ways to learn about the ocean. After all, learning is the first step to getting involved in marine conservation.