With a collection of over 12,000 animals including amphibians, birds, butterflies, fish and invertebrates, the Tennessee Aquarium is a non-profit public aquarium located in the southern Tennessee city of Chattanooga, United States.
In 1992 the aquarium opened its first building, River Journey and later underwent major expansion in 2005 with its new Ocean Journey.
Interesting Facts About The Tennessee Aquarium
• A centerpiece of a 21st Century Waterfront plan for downtown Chattanooga, the Tennessee Aquarium was originally founded during the 1980s and early part of the 1990s as part of an effort to revitalize the Chattanooga Riverfront.
• Tennessee’s Aquarium was designed by the firm Cambridge Seven Associates who were also responsible for designing Boston’s New England Aquarium and the National Aquarium in Baltimore.
• Construction of the facility first began in 1988 with the aquarium later opening in 1992. By the end of August 1992 the aquarium achieved its first-year goal of 650,000 visitors and by the end of May 1993 was visited by over 1.5 million people.
• Upon its opening in 1992, Tennessee’s 130,000 square foot building, River Journey facility containing a total of 1,500,000 L of water was recognized as the world’s largest freshwater aquarium. The facility which is primarily designed and themed to the Story of the River is also devoted to housing smaller aquatic and marine life from around the world such as frogs, seahorses, and turtles.
• In 1994 the Tennessee Aquarium founded its research department. The Tennessee Aquarium Conservation Institute conservation initiative later founded in 1996 for its research and conservation activities was designed to protect the aquatic species and southern habitats of the United States.
• Recognized as one of the most top public aquariums in the United States and ranked nationally the fourth-best aquarium, the Tennessee Aquarium in 2013 received its twenty-millionth visitor. In 2015 the Tennessee Aquarium was rated as the eighth-best aquarium worldwide.
Tennessee Aquarium Exhibits
• Tennessee Aquarium Delta Country exhibit houses species from Mississippi’s River delta.
• Alligator Bayou opened in 2015 and the centerpiece of the exhibit is home to a group of young alligators as well as a pair of alligator snapping turtles.
• Founded in the Tennessee River valley, the aquarium’s Rivers of the World gallery which features several aquaria species native to the Amazon River, Congo (Zaire) River, Fly River among others is also home to an electric eel, which connects with the public by way of a social media account through the current it generates. The highlight of the Rivers of the World gallery a 550,000 L, Nickajack Lake tank is home to a number of species native to the Tennessee River such as the American paddlefish and channel catfish.
• Tennessee Aquarium’s River Giants houses giant freshwater fish from around the world, including alligator gar, giant freshwater stingray, giant pangasius, and redtail catfish.
• The aquarium’s Ocean Journey is home to a collection of hyacinth macaws, a butterfly garden displaying butterfly species native to South American and a touch tank featuring small sharks and rays.
• Besides its exhibit halls, the Tennessee Aquarium has two public offsite facilities. A 65-foot catamaran tour boat offering visitors a tour of the Tennessee River Gorge amount other sites and an IMAX 3D movie theatre adjacent to the Ross Landing Park.
Tennessee Aquarium Webcams
Secret Reef Webcam
Major exhibits featured in the aquarium’s Ocean Journey include the aquarium’s largest tank, Secret Reef, displaying bonnet head sharks, green sea turtles and sand tiger sharks as well as the Boneless Beauties and Jellies: Living Art galleries and Penguin’s Rock.
River Otter Falls Webcam
In 2014 the aquarium opened its Appalachian Cove, River Otter Falls as a replacement for its smaller exhibit of North American river otters. Appalachian Cove which features a 110,000 L mountain sink containing an artificial waterfall, also houses an exhibit of North American song birds including daces, darters, hog suckers, redhorse, and shiners.
Penguin Rock Webcam
Penguins’ Rock features the aquarium’s collection of gentoo and macaroni penguins displayed both onshore and swimming in a 61,000 L tank.
View Tennessee’s Penguin Rock Webcam.
Tennessee Aquarium other exhibits include the Boneless Beauties and Jellies: Living Art galleries housing aquatic species such as corals, cuttlefish, Japanese spider crabs and giant Pacific octopuses.
Jellies: Living Art is a joint venture between the aquarium and the Hunter Museum of American Art and features exhibits designed with rotating glass next to the jellyfish.
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