From Microcosm Aquarium Explorer
Where the Whale Sharks Swim
Located in steamy downtown Hotlanta, this is the world’s largest aquarium. It houses three specimens of the world’s largest fish, the whale shark, which is harmless to humans and can grow to lengths of 65 feet and weigh 35 tons. The aquarium has more than eight million gallons of fresh and marine water, which hold up to 120,000 fish and sea creatures.
Five Habitat Displays
These are divided into five different displays representing a wide range of habitats, including Ocean Voyageur (whale sharks, stingrays, and hammerhead sharks), Coldwater Quest (beluga whales, sea lions, giant octopus, and Japanese spider crabs), Georgia Explorer (local sea life such as horseshoe crabs in kid-friendly touch pools), River Scout (Amazon fish such as arapaima and arawana, as well as Asian small-clawed otters), and Tropical Diver (tropical coral reefs and a children’s area where kids can “find Nemo”).
The reef aquarium was set up by Dr. Bruce Carlson, formerly the director of the Waikiki Aquarium.
Whale Shark Research & Conservation
But the aquarium is not merely a diverting day trip; it is also an opportunity to learn about sustainability in diverse ecosystems. The exhibits stress conservation and environmentalism in all habitats, and the aquarium is an active supporter of whale shark research and conservation.
Their Seafood Savvy program educates visitors on how to choose seafood for conscientious consumption.
Their excellent website features aquarium webcams of beluga whales and zebra shark pups.
A male Weedy Sea Dragon is currently carrying eggs, only the third reported such pregnancy at a U.S. public aquarium. Aquarists at the aquarium hope the eggs will hatch in mid-July. See Breeding the Weedy Sea Dragon.
Organization type: Public Aquaria