Texas State Aquarium
The Texas State Aquarium
|Date opened||July 6, 1990|
|Location||Corpus Christi, Texas, USA|
|Land area||6.3 acres (2.5 ha)|
|Volume of largest tank||400,000 US gal (1,500,000 l)|
The Texas State Aquarium is a nonprofit aquarium located in Corpus Christi, Texas, United States. It is dedicated to promoting environmental conservation and rehabilitation of the wildlife of the Gulf of Mexico. It has been accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) since 1995.
Originally conceived by a coalition led by the Junior League of Corpus Christi and named the Gulf Coast Zoological and Botanical Society, the organization changed its name to the Corpus Christi Aquarium Association in 1978, and then to Texas State Aquarium Association in 1986 after the Texas State Legislature designated it the "Official Aquarium of Texas", although it would receive no state dollars.
After more than 20 years of fundraising, planning, and building, the Texas State Aquarium opened its first exhibit to the public on July 6, 1990. In 1993 the aquarium became a federally permitted animal rehabilitation facility, and in 1995, it was accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA).
- Dolphin Bay
This 400,000-US-gallon (1,500,000 l) saltwater exhibit houses two Atlantic bottlenose dolphins: Shadow and Kai. The two Atlantic dolphins put on an educational dolphin presentation, two to three times per day (depending on the season), so that visitors may speak with trainers about how trainers interact with their dolphins as well as learn more about how to conserve and protect the world's oceans.
- Eagle Pass
- Floating Phantoms
- Flower Gardens
- Hawn Wild Flight Theater
These presentations feature a variety of trained birds including parrots, hawks, owls, and falcons. The Hawn Wild Flight Theater honors the Hawn family for their long-standing commitment to the Aquarium's mission of wildlife education and conservation in South Texas. The theater was opened April 24, 2007.
- Islands of Steel
The largest indoor exhibit at the Aquarium, Islands of Steel recreates the habitat formed around an oil platform. The 125,000-gallon exhibit includes nurse sharks, amberjack, tarpon, grouper, a barracuda, a sand tiger shark, and many other species that could be found in a naturally occurring habitat in the Gulf of Mexico.
- Living Shores
- Otter Creek
Four North American River Otters reside at the Aquarium and can be viewed interacting with one another and their trainers throughout the day.
- Stingray Flats
Visitors can touch Atlantic and cownose stingrays in the Aquarium's largest outdoor touch pool.
- Swamp Tales
- Tortuga Cay
Visitors can view the rehabilitated and unreleasable sea turtles above and below the water at this exhibit. Tortugay Cay includes three green sea turtles (Squirt, Pickles, and Crush), one kemp's ridley sea turtle (Daisy), one hawksbill sea turtle (Hemingway), and a loggerhead sea turtle (Tiki).
The aquarium appears in the pilot episode of JAG, when Harmon Rabb Jr. has a flashback of when he was with his father as a child on board an aircraft carrier (the USS Lexington Museum is located nearby).
- The Handbook of Texas Online: Texas State Aquarium
- "History". texasstateaquarium.org. Texas State Aquarium. Retrieved 31 July 2011.
- "List of Accredited Zoos and Aquariums". aza.org. AZA. Retrieved 21 February 2011.
- The Loop: Under-Whelming
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