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California Academy of Sciences Steinhart Aquarium / California Academy of Sciences news

Discussion in 'United States' started by DavidBrown, 20 Sep 2011.

  1. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    For anybody interested in unique aquarium species and/or planning to visit the Steinhart Aquarium at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco there are apparently now several unique species from the Philippines now living in the aquarium. Highlights include the ghost pipefish and cocoanut octopus (apparently named this because they live in the shells of sunken cocoanuts). This information is from the September 2011 newsletter.

    Here is a picture of the stunning ghost pipefish from the Cal Academy website: http://www.calacademy.org/google_ea...ilippines/slideshow.swf?locale=mainit_bubbles
    The picture is the 5th picture in the gallery at this URL.
     
    Last edited: 20 Sep 2011
  2. Jurek7

    Jurek7 Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    Hello,

    I am more interested in nudibranches (colorful sea slugs) on the first slides. Does Aquarium manage to keep them in captivity? I am curious, because nudibranches are among the most colorful animals on Earth, I never seen them alive, but are considered impossible to keep because of their specialized diet.
     
  3. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    @Jurek7: The only animals that the article mentions as being at the aquarium from the Philippines are the ghost pipefish, cocoanut octopus, fire urchins, and some coral species. There are some nudibranchs in the aquarium, but my memory is that they are native California-area Pacific species.

    They have a whole blog and website section on the Philippines expedition here: The 2011 Philippine Biodiversity Expedition: California Academy of Sciences
     
    Last edited: 20 Sep 2011
  4. reduakari

    reduakari Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    Monterey Bay Aquarium usually has a nice assortment of colorful native Northern California nudibranchs, well showcased in the Rocky Shores portion of the main exhibit hall. They are among my favorites, for their fantastic coloration and interesting behaviors.
     
  5. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    @Jurek7, reduakari, anyone else interested:

    Here is an interesting interview with the Cal Academy's nudibranch expert. She talks about keeping nudibranchs in aquariums and explains exactly why the Steinhart has only local native nudibranchs and not ones from the Philippines.

    Why Nudibranchs? And Readers' Questions - NYTimes.com
     
  6. jusko88

    jusko88 Well-Known Member

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  7. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    This is cool jusko. Thanks for finding and posting. I did not know that the Steinhart once had a dugong. I remember seeing their Amazonian manatee in 1982 and 1985. They never had another sirenian after that manatee died in the late 1980s.
     
  8. jusko88

    jusko88 Well-Known Member

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    I know david!!!!!!!!!! Ungulate nerd told me about it :)
     
  9. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member 15+ year member

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    Eugenie was the first dugong to be kept in captivity. He was captured in the Palau Islands in 1955 (via a spear, as mentioned in the newsreel). He survived for 45 days at the aquarium.
     
  10. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member 15+ year member

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    an article here about his capture: 001 19560100: 14 (this is page 14, the article continues onto page 15)
     
  11. ungulate nerd

    ungulate nerd Well-Known Member

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    Thank you for posting this Jusko88, apparently Steinhart Aquarium had some really rare marine mammals such as Amazon manatees like david brown mentioned above, along with Pacific white sided dolphins, Ganges river dolphins, Amazon river dolphins, Dugong and the not so rare Harbor seal, now Steinhart has no marine mammals which is in my opinion sad
     
  12. DavidBrown

    DavidBrown Well-Known Member 15+ year member

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    From an animal welfare perspective it is probably good that they don't have any marine mammals as they don't have enough room for modern enclosures for these species. The Pacific white-sided dolphins were in a very small tank and had left the aquarium several years before the whole facility was torn down and rebuilt.
     
  13. ThylacineAlive

    ThylacineAlive Well-Known Member 10+ year member

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    I didn't realize Dougongs said 'daaaahhh';)

    Do any facilities keep Amazonian Manatees outside of maybe one or two South American zoos? Also, what are your opinions on the Pygmy Manatee?

    ~Thylo:cool:
     
  14. ungulate nerd

    ungulate nerd Well-Known Member

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    They actually used to have Amazon manatees Frankfurt Zoo, The old Hamburg Zoo, Antwerpen Zoo, Amsterdam Artis Zoo, Worclaw Zoo and London Zoo, but besides Steinhart Aquarium, I do not know of any other facilities in the United States housing such an amazing and rare species, and regarding Pygmy manatees, I would like to believe that they are there own species but the scientist who discovered them is a suspicious man always getting himself into trouble so honestly dont know what to believe regarding pygmy manatee taxonomy
     
  15. ThylacineAlive

    ThylacineAlive Well-Known Member 10+ year member

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    Based on what I know, Pygmy Manatees, as seen in pictures, is different in color and size but also apparently in diet and habitat.

    ~Thylo:cool:
     
  16. ungulate nerd

    ungulate nerd Well-Known Member

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    Going back to Amazonian manatees in captivity outside of South America, it turns out that they also had them at Fort Worth Zoo, Pittsburgh Zoo, Milwaukee County Zoo, St. Louis Zoo, Shedd Aquarium, and New York Aquarium.

    And going back to Dugongs, I found out that the Rangoon Zoo in Myanmar had them in the 1960s
     
  17. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member 10+ year member

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    The scientist who discovered the Pygmy Manatee is Marc van Roosmalen, a Dutch guy who has discovered loads of new monkey-species. In the Dutch book "Blootsvoets door de Amazone" ( barfeet throught the Amazon ) he describes many of his discoveries ( deer, peccari, coati, a second jaguar species ( ! ), the Pygmy Manatee and so on ). From his discription I believe the Dwarf Manatee is a 'good' species.
    By the way it's maybe also intresting to know that before he went to South America, he lived on a boot with several monkeys some of which he gave to Apenheul Monkey park ( like his Spider monkeys ).
     
  18. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member 10+ year member

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  19. temp

    temp Well-Known Member

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    Two years ago Steinhart Aquarium (California Academy of Sciences) became to the first aquarium in the world to successfully keep and breed a species of pygmy* seahorse, specifically the Bargibant's pygmy seahorse (Hippocampus bargibanti). The seahorse itself was apparently not that hard to keep once the aquarium had cracked keeping Muricella gorgonians, the exclusive habitat of the species:

    Rarely-Seen Pygmy Sea Horses Hatch at Steinhart Aquarium - ZooBorns

    However, this was all behind the scenes and out of view for visitors. At the time there were talks about making an exhibit for the species. Does anyone know if this ever materialized? Has it been on display?


    *Dwarf seahorse (H. zosterae) has been kept with some frequency in aquariums, but it is not a true pygmy seahorse.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 3 Sep 2022
  20. jayjds2

    jayjds2 Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    These were my main driving point behind visiting Steinhart Aquarium. After my email inquiring about them wasn't answered (two months later- now it's been over half a year and they've still not replied), I decided against visiting. Through extensive googling and searching this site, I figured out that they were on display in the staff choice section (staff chooses what to display). Whether they are still there, or have a permanent exhibit at all, I haven't a clue, but they were definitely on exhibit at one point.