Animal Care & Enrichment
Have you ever wondered about how we ensure our animals are happy and healthy? The health and well-being of our ocean friends is our top priority.
Our husbandry staff provides the best possible care with expertise and dedication and has over 100 years of combined animal care experience.
Part of our mission is to foster actions that help protect our planet and the animals that live here. By introducing people to these amazing creatures, we hope they make connections, fall in love and personally engage in protecting our planet.
Can you train a fish? Yes! Our sharks and some other animals are target trained. This type of training involves encouraging the animal to use its mouth or nose to touch a target like a pole or particular shape.
Animals are rewarded for completing the task by getting fed. This positive experience allows our handlers to develop a trusting relationship with the animals so they can get the proper nutrition and medical care without any undue stress.
We provide frequent enrichment opportunities to our animals to give them an opportunity to exercise control over their environment and enhance their well-being. Enrichment items are things like food, toys and other objects that are designed to encourage natural behaviors or provide stimulation by changing routine, all of which help to brighten their day.
Enrichment is just as essential to animal welfare as proper nutrition and veterinary care and can range from fun food puzzles to embracing their artistic side!
Video: Frank the Scrawled File Fish recognizing his target and getting fed.
Photo: Zenon the zebra shark painting a picture by booping her target with her nose. Animal art is a cool and engaging experience for humans, but most importantly ensures that our animals are stimulated and active.
OTHER ANIMAL CARE FAQS
What do you feed the animals?
Our animals are fed restaurant quality food from sustainable fisheries.
What happens to the animals if you lose the power?
We have 24 hr., remote access, life support monitoring equipment to ensure our animals are always kept within proper environmental parameters.
Do animals need a break from people?
Yes, all of our touch tank ambassadors are provided choice or adequate rest periods when participating in any programming.
What happens when an animal gets sick or injured?
Our animals have 24/7 access to veterinary care. Our Veterinary program follows policies and practices that have been developed and are supported by the American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.
Got more questions about our animals? Contact our husbandry staff.