Conservation in Action

Whether you live directly on the coast or hundreds of miles inland, protecting our ocean planet is everyone’s job! Learn what actions you and your whole family can take to protect marine ecosystems around the world.

Here at Mystic Aquarium, we strive to inspire our visitors to care for and protect our ocean planet, one of the ways that this realized is by supporting sustainable practices on campus!


What we do!

All non-recyclable waste is sent to Covanta SECONN, an energy-from-waste facility which converts solid debris into useable energy through an incineration system.

Instead of being thrown away, unused fish (purchased for feeding) is collected and re-used by education staff for programs or donated to local fishermen.

Fruit and vegetable scraps from behind-the-scene areas are composted for later use.

What can you do?
Participate in a coastal cleanup – Volunteers removed more than 10 million pounds of waste from coastlines in 2012 alone!

Put trash where it belongs – Items you may be throwing away can contaminate the soil and water for a very long time. Your community has special disposal procedures for everything from ink cartridges to batteries.

Recycle! – Did you know that you can recycle used iced coffee cups but not a frozen food box? Each state and town may have difference recycling policy so check out the flyers below to learn what you could be recycling at home.

Water Conservation

Adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street.

For cold drinks, keep a pitcher of water in the refrigerator instead of running the tap. This way, every drop goes down you and not the drain.

Water your lawn and garden in the morning or evening when temperatures are cooler to minimize evaporation.

Spreading a layer of organic mulch around plants retains moisture and saves water, time and money.

If your shower fills a one-gallon bucket in less than 20 seconds, replace the shower head with a water-efficient model.

Shorten your shower by a minute or two and you’ll save up to 150 gallons per month.

Put food coloring in your toilet tank. If it seeps into the toilet bowl without flushing, you have a leak. Fixing it can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.

Use a commercial car wash that recycles water.

Encourage your school system and local government to develop and promote water conservation among children and adults.

When the kids want to cool off, use the sprinkler in an area where your lawn needs it the most.

Turn off the water while you wash your hair to save up to 150 gallons a month.

When you have ice left in your cup from a take-out restaurant, don’t throw it in the trash, dump it on a plant.

Energy Conservation

What we all can do!

Put one foot in front of the other – Using fuel-efficient cars is important, but we can save even more by simply driving less.

Flip the switch – When leaving a room, don’t forget to turn off the lights and unplug any unused electronics.

Wash clothes in cold or warm water, not hot – According to Energy Star, almost 90% of energy used by washing machines goes to heating the water.

Run the dishwasher only when full and don’t use heat to dry dishes.

Replace old appliances with energy-efficient models.

Adjust your thermostat – lower in winter, higher in summer.

Share these simple steps with friends and family to help increase awareness.

Get Involved!

Become a member of Mystic Aquarium’s Conservation Club!  This club is open exclusively to Mystic Aquarium members & offers exciting benefits and unique opportunities to participate in citizen science and nature play activities.

Not an Aquarium member?  Click here to take advantage of the amazing membership benefits!


Upcoming Conservation Club Programs include:

International Coastal Cleanup
Help celebrate our local estuary by giving back to the environment. Join us at Bluff Point State Park as we participate in the Annual International Coastal Cleanup initiative!

Saltmarsh Exploration
Come and explore the complex salt marsh ecosystem during this special members-only event. Join us at Barn Island Wildlife Management Area in Stonington as we collect data on the health of a local marsh while discovering the unique plant and animal life that make it their home. Be prepared to get dirty and have fun!

Christmas Bird Count Program
Bundle up and join us as we head outside to be part of the annual Christmas Bird Count. Exploring some of our local conservation land, we will look and listen for a wide number of birds that over-winter in our area.