- Visit the Aquarium
- Animals & Exhibits
- Fun & Learning
- Deep-Sea Exploration
- Aquatic Research
Our 30,000-gallon Coral Reef exhibit allows for above- and below-water viewing, and has over 45 species of fish! See if you can find the
~Green Moray Eel (Gymnothorax funebris). This menacing looking creature is really not so bad. The rather spooky way it opens and closes its mouth is really just to move water over its gills and breathe. If you’re lucky, you can see it gently undulate its body to swim from one resting spot to another.
~Porcupinefish (Diodon hystrix). These rather cute-for-their-size fish can grow to lengths of 3 feet! Ours are easily spotted, and still growing! Click here to read more.
~Lionfish (Pterois volitans). One of the deadliest, and yet most beautiful. The Lionfish is extremely adaptive. Native to the Indo Pacific, Lionfish are invasive to the Atlantic Ocean. Organizations are tracking the animals and taking part in programs to educate the public and help in removal of the lionfish from the reefs. If you’ve seen one in the Atlantic Ocean, let these guys know! Reef.org
There are among 40 or so other species of fish including: Bluestriped Grunt (Haemulon sciurus), Damselfish (Stegastes adustus), Doctorfish (Acanthurus chirurgus), French Angelfish (Pomacanthus paru), Grey Angelfish (Pomacathus acruatus), Black Grouper (Mycteroperca bonaci), Ocean Surgeonfish (Acanthurus bahianus), Palometa (Trachinotus goodie), Porkfish (Anisotremus virginicus), Queen Angelfish (Holacanthus ciliaris), and Queen Triggerfish (Balistes vetula)
Adjacent to the Coral Reef are exhibits featuring other types of life found in and around coral reef zones. Check out the Clownfish and Anemones exhibit – a perennial favorite for children, who love to “find Nemo!” We have two species of clownfish in this exhibit - the false clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris) and skunk clownfish (Amphiprion perideraion). There are also two convict blennys (Pholidichthy leucotaenia) in the tank - look for them under the coral and anemones, digging out tunnels.
Across from the clownfish, meet a rescued loggerhead hatchling from the Sea Turtle Awareness Program by The North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores. The turtle will be raised here until ready for release into North Carolina’s waters in one to three years. Read more about loggerheads by clicking here…
There’s so much more! Our Main Gallery shows off the beauty of Predators of the Reef, an Indo Pacific Reef, the well-camouflaged Frogfish, the Amazon, African Rift, Seahorses, and many more of our ocean planet’s amazing creatures.
We are accredited by:
Dawn Holman and Elizabeth Lillie are featured in this video to talk about our Water Quality Lab here at Mystic Aquarium.
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