Grooming is an important skill that sea otter pup Cayucos has had to develop. Since she arrived in January, the hour allotted for each of the pup’s seven, then six, and now five daily meals, has also given trainers a hands-on chance to groom her. She has also had separate grooming sessions throughout her day.
8 posts from February 2012
February 23, 2012
February 20, 2012
We cannot tell a lie. Shedd Aquarium does not have any fishes or other animals with “Washington” in their common or scientific names. And thanks to Kathy Lee, special projects manager and our resource extraordinaire on who is in what exhibit, we know that we don’t have any animals named Lincoln, either.
But Kathy helped us cherry-pick two holiday-appropriate dazzlers: the cherry anthias in the Oceans gallery and the cherry barb in Rivers.
February 15, 2012
Sea otter pup Cayucos’s day starts a lot like yours and mine: She wakes up, she might splash in a little water and groom, and she has breakfast.
But then it veers off into what we can only hope for when we’re on vacation: swimming, playing games, catching a few naps, hanging out with friends and indulging in good food. And—like we might also do on vacation—gaining weight. But when you’re a rapidly growing pup, that’s a good thing.
Each species in Shedd’s Jellies special exhibit has some stunning attribute that sets it apart from the others and makes you stop and look. The purple-striped sea nettle is a study in contrasts. The silver-white bell has 16 deep red rays that will darken to purple as the jelly matures. Between the rays are fine speckles in a similar hue. From the inside center of the large bell, four ruffled white oral arms can trail a foot or more while eight maroon tentacles hang down like ribbons from the bell’s edge.
The stripes on the bell make it easier to picture the inner workings of jellies. Small planktonic prey are zapped by the stinging cells on the tentacles and then carried along the tentacles and oral arms into the jelly’s stomach. Digested nutrients course through the body in tubular canals associated with those colorful rays on the bell. What isn’t digested goes back out the way it came in, through the mouth.
February 14, 2012
For the last several weeks, Shedd Aquarium and NBC Chicago collected the love stories of couples seeking to take the next step in their relationship. Through this contest, Matt won the chance to propose to Krystal at Shedd, with the help of a beluga whale! If you believe timing is everything, you will enjoy this story.
Matt and Krystal both attended Bradley University, but never met despite the school’s small size. They had mutual friends and at times lived down the street from each other, but their paths never crossed. It wasn’t time.
February 11, 2012
Valentine's Day is just around the corner, so what better time to start some sweet, sustainable traditions? We hope you take inspiration from some of these suggestions:
- At Shedd, we carry a variety of gifts that are gentler on the environment than many products. Consider a piece of elegant recycled-content glassware or item of fair-trade-certified clothing.
- Looking for fine dining? Consider dining at one of our Right Bite partners' restaurants. If you're a kitched connoisseur and would rather prepare your own meal, our selection of sustainable seafood recipes are sure to please even the pickiest of palates.
- If wine is on the menu, buy a bottle that uses real cork. Mediterranean cork forests are harvested using sustainable forestry methods, and the trees provide habitat for many kinds of animals. You can save up old corks and find a Cork ReHarvest drop-off location, where corks are turned into a variety of new products.
- Make your own gifts. Recipes abound for chemical-free bubble baths, lip balms, massage oils and other luxurious treats.
- Or, you could skip "stuff" altogether and give a special experience. At Shedd, we offer penguin and beluga encounters, but tickets to a concert or show are great ideas as well.
February 09, 2012
Your seafood choices can have a big impact on the health of our oceans and lakes—so make sure it’s a positive one! Every month, Shedd shares a sustainable seafood dish that’s good for you and good for our planet. February’s pick is domestic mackerel. You’ll find mackerel on Shedd’s best choice list for sustainable seafood. Although mackerel is caught off the U.S. Atlantic coast, it is underappreciated by the American palate. Mackerel is a striking fish with a robust flavor, but it is not as pungent as sardines or herring. Some culinary aficionados compare it to tuna because of its oilier, omega-3-rich texture.
February 06, 2012
The painted turtle (Chrysemys picta) is the most widely distributed turtle in North America, and two of the four subspecies, the midland painted turtle and the western painted turtle, live in the Great Lakes region. They prefer shallow, slow-moving bodies of water with soft bottoms and abundant aquatic vegetation. Painted turtles get their common name from the beautiful red and yellow markings along the head, body and shell. An adult painted turtle has a carapace (upper section of the shell) length anywhere from 4 to 10 inches. In the wild, they forage for aquatic plants, but will also eat small fishes, insects, spiders and snails.