That's what I kept thinking when I saw this exhibit at the Aquarium of Niagara Falls, remembering the 2003 film, Finding Nemo film and Dory's advice.
Did you spot Nemo the clownfish?
This is not a major aquarium by any means. Most likely we would have bypassed it if not included as part of an Adventure Pass in which a single price provides admission to various attractions, including The Maid of the Mist boat, Casa Loma, and the Royal Ontario Museum, all of which we wanted to do and see. The aquarium was sort of a "bonus."
But on an afternoon when rain was threatened (luckily never happened) it was a good way to be indoors. Also, as we arrived late in the day, there were no bus crowds, which made exploring easier as this is a small space. Photographing aquatic exhibits in dim light is always trickily with available light, but some colorful results . . .
The aquarium opened as a privately owned corporation in summer 1965. It was founded by a small group of chemists and scientists to introduce an artificial seawater. It soon became a model for the operation of inland aquaria. Technology was applied for the first time on a large scale in the preparation, handling and management of synthetic seawater.
The Aquarium was established as an institution for education and recreation in an area with high visitation and historical dependency on the natural resources of the Great Lakes. It served students, scientists and visitors from throughout the region. Community support was strong; the innovative inland aquarium won acceptance.
Over 1,500 aquatic animals live at the Niagara Falls aquarium, representing ecosystems ranging from the Great Lakes to coral reefs. Highlights include over 40 exhibits starring California sea lions, Peruvian penguins, seahorses, sturgeon and more. Of course, our personal favorites were these penguins. Check out those colorful feet, no need for fancy footwear . . .
In 1977, the principal the aquarium's principal owner established Sea Research Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to education and research. The aquarium became part of this foundation, a leader in marine research, deep-sea exploration and hands-on education.Then, In 1994, it was transferred to a local group, the Niagara Aquarium Foundation which continues the institution’s tradition of education, research, and wildlife conservation.
Favorites of mine include sea horses and lionfish; everything about the showy lionfish screams Don't Touch from its zebra-like stripes, long, showy pectoral fins, and cantankerous disposition. Its venom from an array of up to 18 needle-like dorsal fins, is purely defensive; it uses camouflage and lightning-fast reflexes to capture prey, mainly fish and shrimp. A lion fish sting is very painful to humans and can cause nausea and breathing difficulties, but is rarely fatal. Seahorses, upright swimming relatives of the pipefish, are unique not just because of their equine shape, but unlike most other fish, they are monogamous and mate for life and they are among the only animal species on Earth in which the male bears the unborn young.
But these were the biggest stars of our aquarium visit, the sea lion demonstration. Children of all ages crowded in to see this show, including Grenville and myself.
But, then we suspect you already knew we were kids at heart.