Touching stingrays and horseshoe Arabs Is one of the exalt highlights posted on the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher website, also saying one can “talk to a SCUBA diver sliming with 2014), Aquarium volunteer, informed me that the stingrays are not harmful, because they are all babies and have had their tails clipped. The website also draws attention to touching live bamboo sharks, and meeting Ulna an albino alligator. Amanda Hickey (201 1), Content Editor for The Daily News, commented on her experience saying, “the albino alligator looked like a statue, it stayed so still in its area.

The sharks moved so gracefully in the water among the other fish in their tank. The bullfrog blended right into the lily pads. ” Hickey beautifully puts into words how relaxing the Aquarium can be when ones learning about the different inhabitants of the surrounding waters. Visitors of the Aquarium also get to discover North Carolina’s fiercest predator Megalomania which is regarded as one of the largest and most powerful predators in vertebrate history. The exhibit includes a complete set of Megalomania teeth and a life-sized Megalomania Jaw as its centerpiece, it is a wonderful attraction.

Programs Offered The Aquarium offers an assortment of fun and educational programs throughout the year. Some special indoor activities include Aquarius Apprentice, Extended Behind the Scenes Tour, Behind the Scenes Tour, and children’s Discovery Times. The Aquariums website giving a specific age for each activity and emphasizing that “children must be accompanied by a paying adult” (“North Carolina,” n. D. A). Daily programs is another great attraction, it is appropriate for all ages and includes seven separate events.

The website list Dialog with a Diver, observing Aquarium divers in their daily tasks and swims with sharks, rays and eels; Creature Feature, where participants will learn about animals up close and personal; Ocean Odyssey, where n Aquarium educator will help visitors discover facts about the underwater world; Animal Feedings, which includes observing the animals feeding patterns with an educator on hand to answer questions; Animal Encounter, that gives one the chance to interact with the different reptiles, amphibians, and more; Smart Cart Connection, where educators and volunteers share a range of interesting topics; and Educational Films, that are short and meant to increase knowledge in the general public (“North Carolina,” n. D. A). Scouts Program A Program separated into boys and girls that includes hands-on activities, and aches children the rewards of earning badges. The Boy Scouts have the option to earn an Oceanography Merit Badge by learning the basics of oceanography with hands-on activities and/or the option of earning a Naturalist Merit Badge by learning the ins and outs to what being a naturalist is all about (“North Carolina,” n. D. D). Girl Scouts are offered two programs, the first being From Shore to Sea Patch Program where Scouts will hike to the salt marsh to observe, and collect marsh plants and animals.

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The second called Water Wonders Patch Program which includes catching blue crabs, seine and dip netting (“North Carolina,” n. . D). The wonderful thing is the cost for admission is eight dollars for adults and six dollars for children under thirteen, prices after admission do vary. Adventure Reef The Aquarium recently added a new children’s playground called Adventure Reef that features springy climbing cables, spinning bars, and wobble pods to flex children’s mental and physical muscle. The primary goal of the playground is to keep children active and outside, says Corey Strickland (2012), Star News. In an interview our visitors is that spending time together, whether it’s a couple or a family, is import.

It (the area) was not built to bring new revenue, but to extend the time families spend here, we want them to have more things to do” (2012). Adventure Reef “dares children of ages 2-12 to climb, crawl, wiggle, leap, balance, swing and slide their way to fun in a safe and engaging way’ says Fort Fisher on their website, “In addition to the play structure, families can explore together to find fossils shark teeth and other treasures in a new fossil dig area shaped like a spiraling nautilus shell” (“North Carolina,” 2012). The $78,000 project was made possible through donations from the North Carolina Aquarium Society, along with a sponsorship from Time Warner Cable, Pizza Hut, Patchwork-Aurora, and the Weston Foundation (“North Carolina,” 2012).

Though the attraction took longer to build than planned, and was not able to be constructed in the shape of a coral reef, Sloan could see that the playground was already “a big hit” (Strickland, 2012) Outdoor Activities Outdoor Exploration is another great hands on experience giving children a safe and fun way to explore North Carolina’s natural environment, with an educated naturalist on hand to answer questions. With six different programs, participants have to ecocide whether they want to paddle by canoe to explore Kike’s Island Estuarine Research Reserve, or spend the day learning the art of saltwater fishing from the beach. According to the Aquariums website, Fort Fisher Hermit School of Common Sense is another program available, giving the opportunity to learn the history of the Fort Fisher Hermit, Robert E. Harrier by watching an award winning documentary entitled ‘The Fort Fisher Hermit: The Life & Death of Robert E.

Hairball (“North Carolina,” n. D. C). Partakers will then venture to the bunker where Harrier lived and learn how he survived largely on plants and animals. If that does not strike interest there is also a choice of exploring the only natural rock outcrop on the North Carolina coast, or one can choose to hike the salt marsh and learn about the plants and animals that inhabit its environment. Whatever the visitors of Fort Fisher Aquarium decide to participate in, they are guaranteed to have an adventure filled with excitement and learning. As one can see North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher is a place the whole family can go to enjoy themselves.

With chances to touch live animals and talk to SCUBA divers swimming with sharks, it is a place worth seeing. The variety of programs at Fort Fisher Aquarium are not only enjoyable, but are filled with numerous learning opportunities. The addition of Adventure Reef provides children with a chance to get out their energy, and Outdoor explorations is a great way to learn about the Natural world. With so many things to get involved in, The Aquarium at Fort Fisher is a great place to take the family and spend a special day together. Hickey, A (2011). Wrapping up the drive at Fort Fisher. Daily News, The Jacksonville, NC). Moore, G. (n. D. ). Aquarium in Fort Fisher. In Wilmington Today. Retrieved February 1, 2014 North Carolina Aquarium Society. (2012).

Adventure Reef Opens. In North Carolina Aquariums at Fort Fisher. Retrieved February 1, 2014 North Carolina Aquarium Society. (n. D. A). Daily Programs. In North Carolina Aquariums at Fort Fisher. Retrieved February 1, 2014 North Carolina Aquarium Society. (n. D. B). North Carolina Aquariums at Fort Fisher. In North Carolina Aquariums. Retrieved February 3, 2014 North Carolina Aquarium Society. (n. D. C). Outdoor Programs. Carolina Aquarium Society. (n. D. D). Scout Program. In North Carolina Aquariums at Fort Fisher. Retrieved February 1, 2014 Strickland, C. (2012). Aquarium at Fort Fisher adds outdoor playground. Star-News (Wilmington, NC).

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