Selka's a successful surrogate! Selka already had an exciting life story when she first joined our Sea Otters exhibit in August 2016. She'd been rescued and returned to the wild twice before making the Aquarium her permanent home. Now this clever and inquisitive girl can add yet another chapter—raising her first pup as a surrogate mother. She taught him how to groom his fur and find food, and very soon, he'll be ready to be released. Good job, Selka!
Use your voice, box(fish)! The newest resident of our ¡Viva Baja! special exhibition is a cute square-shaped fish that hums during courtship rituals and buzzes to defend itself and its mates. The spotted boxfish lives in coral and rocky reefs in the Pacific Ocean and tropical Indo-Pacific. This adorable polka-dotted fish gets its shape from a bony carapace that encases most of its body.
New dreamy drifters! Several lion's mane jellies (Cyanea capillata) have been added to our Open Sea wing. Despite being used as a murder weapon in the Sherlock Holmes novel, The Adventure of the Lion's Mane, the sting of this toxic species isn't fatal to humans. So relax and enjoy the mesmerizing display as these calming creatures cruise the currents.
Hello, feathered friend! The newest addition to our Aviary is a rescued black-bellied plover that could no longer survive in the wild due to a wing injury. But why is its belly white? Stay tuned—the species is named for its striking black-and-white breeding plumage.
Scurry, float, bloop! Now on exhibit: pelagic red crabs, also known as tuna crabs. These crimson crustaceans washed up en masse in Monterey Bay during the 2015 El Niño. We raise this lively community behind the scenes, and you can see them scurry along the sand or pump their tails to scoot through the water in our Open Sea wing.
Five feisty fish! Our Kelp Forest exhibit is home to five bright orange garibaldis—California's state fish. These territorial fish can be aggressive toward one another—and even our aquarists—if they feel their space is being invaded. They defend their territory by charging and making a grunting noise that sounds like a burp. Luckily, there's enough room in our exhibit for them to coexist without ruffling each other's fins. See if you can spot all five!
Summer wardrobe change! Our tufted puffins now have their summer breeding plumage. Summer fashion for tufted puffins includes bright orange bill plates and feet, a white "mask" across the eyes and, of course, golden "tufts" of feathers on the head. Visit our Open Sea wing to admire their new look yourself.
It's a lionfish! A sea snake? No, it's a wunderpus! In a flash, this master of disguise can change its shape, hue and color, making it easy to mistake for a venomous sea creature. However, those with keen eyes can recognize its fixed stripes and spots, which have allowed scientists to identify and monitor individual animals in the wild. We've just added a wunderpus to our Tentacles special exhibition, so you can meet this marvel firsthand.
A jelly super bloom! After four years of absence, sea nettle swarms have returned to Monterey Bay. No one is quite sure what triggers these blooms of jellies—it could be water temperatures, currents or other factors. Scientists are gathering reports of jelly sightings to help understand the ocean conditions that promote these mysterious animals. Keep an eye out for these drifters in the water off our back decks.