The Shark & Ray Touch Tank is an incredible opportunity to soak up some science. This exhibit space is currently available for animal viewing, but because of Covid-19, visitors are currently not able to touch the sharks and rays at this time.
The Shark & Ray Touch Tank features Bamboo Sharks, Epaulet Sharks, Cownose Rays and Southern Rays.
Epaulet Sharks are a species of longtailed carpet shark, family Hemiscylliidae, found in shallow, tropical waters off Australia and New Guinea. The common name of this shark comes from the very large, white-margined black spot behind each pectoral fin, which are reminiscent of military epaulettes.
White Spotted Bamboo Sharks feed on small fish, worms and crustaceans. They are nocturnal and live in coral reefs. They have been known to lay eggs that have successfully hatched without being fertilized. This is known as parthenogenesis.
Southern Stingrays feed on small fish, worms and crustaceans. They are able to detect electrical impulses of animals near them. They have a small tail spine (the Rays in the tank have the spines removed) that are filled with venom.
Cownose Rays primarily feed on bivalves, they can crush the shells with their plate-like teeth. They migrate south for the winter. Large schools of up to 10,000 animals will travel together from the coast of Florida to the Yucatan in South America.
Learn more about these amazing creatures when you visit the aquarium!