Do Pacific ocean and Atlantic ocean meet but not mix?

The viral video shows Yellow River from China in first half and Fraser River from Canada in the last portion.


Why the Pacific and Atlantic do not mix?

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The 1 minute and 1 second video shows a person’s hand showing a test tube kind of equipment with many pellet-like sediments in it. The liquid was muddy brown. It looks like the person travels in a small boat. We also see that the water is muddy brown on one side and normal blue on the other side. At the end of the video, we see people from a huge ship seeing the water which shows a difference in color from one side to the other while the vessel is moving. This post is shared with a claim stating, “Why the Pacific and Atlantic do not mix.” You can view related posts with similar claims here, and here.

What’s the truth?

After breaking up the viral video into keyframes, we performed a Google reverse image search on a few of the keyframes. Upon thorough examination, we discovered that the viral clip constitutes two distinct videos.

The first clip is from a small boat with a man holding a test tube-like apparatus filled with brown liquid in it. Additionally, we see waterbodies that are the same brownish color but separated from the typical blue waters. By using Google, we were able to determine that this depicts the Yellow River’s area in China.

If we look closely at the entire viral video, there is another scene near the end where people are watching the water bodies from a large ship. Here, there are two distinct colors in the water. One is slightly grey, and the other is blue. We discovered that this section originates from Canada’s Fraser River.

Yellow River, China: (First Clip)

We found a video on YouTube, posted by the World News channel, that shows this very muddy brown Yellow River that goes into the sea.

According to the video’s description, “A magnificent merger has formed at sea with the muddy waters of the Yellow River meeting with the bright blue of the Bohai Sea off east China’s Shandong Province, creating a collision of two worlds. A distinct line has formed along the water surface marking the point where the yellow waters of China’s second-longest river merge with the grand blue of the Bohai Sea near the city of Dongying. The spectacular scene is an annual occurrence in the flood season between July and October when the Yellow River sees a water surge after being regulated.”

We also discovered additional videos that depicted the Yellow River joining with the sea. Those are available here and here.

We have attached the comparison of the viral video and the Yellow River, China for the reader’s reference.

Fraser River, Canada: (Last portion of the clip)

While searching for images of the Fraser River in Canada, we stumbled upon a YouTube video posted by the Maryan Pears channel.

According to the description, “The river water (Fraser River) flows into the ocean water (Strait of Georgia): a short video clip shot from the BC Ferries boat from Nanaimo, Vancouver Island (Duke Point) to Vancouver (Tsawwassen).” The 1 minute 27 seconds video is titled “When the River Meets the Ocean (Fraser River water flows into the Strait of Georgia).”

We have attached a comparison of the viral clip and the Fraser River, Canada, for the reader’s reference below.

All the above information confirms the first thing that the viral video doesn’t show the Atlantic and Pacific meeting. In reality, there are two different clips merged to form one.

Do the Atlantic and Pacific oceans mix?

The Atlantic and Pacific meet at Cape Horn, at the southernmost tip of Chile, South America. In this region, a strong current carries water from west to east, sweeping water from the Pacific into the Atlantic.

According to the BBC Science Focus, “The Pacific and Atlantic Oceans do mix and are not separate. While we’ve given our planet’s oceans separate names, in reality, there’s no border between them, and currents continually flow between them and mix their waters.”

The article also added, “The viral videos you may have seen online showing two different colored bodies of water drifting alongside each other, claiming to be the meeting point of the Atlantic and Pacific, are showing light-colored, sediment-rich freshwater from melted glaciers meeting dark, salty ocean water in the Gulf of Alaska (and over time, currents and eddies cause these to mix, too).”

The aforementioned details elucidate and verify that the widely shared video does not depict the meeting of the Atlantic and Pacific. Both oceans do, in fact, mix.


In summary, the viral video combines two clips into one. The clip’s first section features the Yellow River in China, and its second section features the Fraser River in Canada. Furthermore, neither the Atlantic nor Pacific oceans are depicted in the video clips. And it is to be noted that oceans do mix.

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Indu Meenakshi

Indu Meenakshi is a former Microbiologist-turned-journalist, works as a Sub-Editor at YouTurn. She additionally holds Master’s in Management and English Literature. As a fact-checker, her job entails actively dispelling false information found online, exposing fake news, and raising public awareness.
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