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Monterey Bay Aquarium ZooBinh's Totally Honest Review + Species List of the MBA

Discussion in 'United States' started by ZooBinh, 1 Sep 2019.

  1. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    The Monterey Bay Aquarium, one of the best aquariums in America, is located on 886 Cannery Row in Monterey Bay, CA. On my recent trip to the great state of California, I visited the magnificent aquarium, which is the best aquarium I've ever been to, which isn't surprising considering the facts that I've only visited mid-tier aquariums before this. In the following posts I'll post a review of each section as well as a species list of the aquarium.
     
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  2. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Sorry I haven't started yet, but its now or never:

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Sea Otters:

    Species List:

    Blue Rockfish
    Opaleye
    Halfmoon
    Kelp Bass
    Kelp Greenling
    Blacksmith
    Yellowtail Rockfish
    Garibaldi
    Striped Surfperch
    Black Perch
    Sea Otter

    Review:

    A beautiful exhibit, interestingly enough the first time I had ever seen sea otters on land. All the fish in the tank with the otters had created a vibrant community with the graceful otters and beautiful fish. Viewing was spectacular, with two floors to view the otters. My only complaint would be the lack of space there is because it can get quite cramped, due to a mass crowd. That is only a minor complaint, though.
     
  3. Great Argus

    Great Argus Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    I thought about trying to do a species list when I was there, but I gave it up pretty quickly since they have so many! Kudos to you for going for it!
     
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  4. birdsandbats

    birdsandbats Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    I never try to do species lists for aquariums (except the ones within zoos) - there are just too many species!
     
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  5. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Yikes! It's been a LONG time since this has been updated! I just never got to it (I don't know why), anyways, let's do it!

    ---------------------------------------------

    Kelp Forest:

    Species List:

    California Sheephead
    Leopard Shark
    Kelp Bass
    Treefish
    Giant Kelp
    Giant Sea Bass
    Blue Rockfish
    Black Rockfish
    Warty Sea Cucumber
    Gopher Rockfish
    Rainbow Seaperch
    Coralline Algae
    Winged Kelp
    Red Abalone
    Red Sea Urchin
    Kelp Rockfish

    Review:

    Amazing exhibit. It was teeming with life and just plain impressive. Nice collection of species, and the design of the tank was amazing, it really looked like I was looking right into the ocean.

    P.S. The species is based off the signage.
     
  6. Great Argus

    Great Argus Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Worth noting MBA often has incomplete signage on the larger tanks.

    Wolf Eel, Senorita, and Pacific Sardines at least are also present.
     
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  7. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Weirdly enough, I didn't notice that but I have a photo of the Pacific Sardines in that tank.
     
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  8. Great Argus

    Great Argus Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    I also have photos of Opaleye in that tank from earlier in 2019. Garibaldi is also missing from the list, and the tank should have Blacksmith as well.
     
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  9. TheEthiopianWolf03

    TheEthiopianWolf03 Well-Known Member

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    @ZooBinh Do you have more species list on you? I think this would be a valuable resource if you do for anyone who has an interest in this world class facility.
     
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  10. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    I'm sorry for not working on it, but I just haven't gotten to it. I'll get to it soon! :)
     
  11. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Monterey Bay Habitats:

    Species List:

    Giant Pacific Octopus
    Fish-Eating Anemone
    Purple Sea Urchin
    California Sea Cucumber
    Vermilion Sea Star
    Halfbanded Rockfish
    Chilipepper
    Giant Keyhole Limpet
    Puget Sound King Crab
    Sheep Crab
    Giant White-Plumed Anemone
    Strawberry Anemone
    Orange Cup Coral
    Lingcod
    Wolfeel
    White-Spotted Rose Anemone
    Rock Scallop
    Strawberry Anemone
    Cowcod
    Giant Sea Bass
    Bocaccio
    Longfin Sculpin
    Great Sculpin
    Blackeye Goby
    Painted Greenling
    Vermilion Rockfish
    Rosy Rockfish
    China Rockfish
    Canary Rockfish
    Yelloweye Rockfish
    Tiger Rockfish
    Starry Rockfish
    Flag Rockfish
    Greenspotted Rockfish
    Sevengill Shark
    Striped Bass
    White Sturgeon
    Leopard Shark
    Yellowtail Rockfish
    Tiger Rockfish
    Jack Mackerel
    Giant Sea Bass
    Pacific Angel Shark
    California Halibut
    Spotted Cusk-Eel
    Flatfishes
    Ocean Whitefish
    Longspine Combfish
    Pacific Pompano
    Calico Rockfish
    Starry Flounder
    Curlfin Turbot
    Diamond Turbot
    C-O Sole
    Sand Dollar
    Spiny Brittle-Star
    North Pacific Bigeye Octopus
    Scale-Sided Piddock
    Wart-Necked Piddock
    Fringehead
    Black Perch
    Orange Volcano Sponge
    Orange Puffball Sponge
    Chestnut Cowry
    Lined Chiton
    Ida's Miter
    Carnivorous Chiton
    Snapping Shrimp
    Skeleton Shrimp
    Striped Seaperch
    Rainbow Seaperch
    Speckled Sanddab
    Rubberlip Perch
    Walleye Surfperch
    White Seaperch
    Onespot Fringehead
    California Mussel
    Acorn Barnacle
    Fat Inkeeper Worm
    Ghost Shrimp
    Hermit Crab
    Moonglow Anemone
    Sea Grapes
    Bay Pipefish
    Dwarf Perch
    Tubesnout
    Black Turban Snail
    Bat Star
    Scaled Worm Snail
    Owl Limpet
    Giant Green Anemone
    Striped Shore Crab
    Red Abalone
    Reef Surfperch
    Aggregating Anemone
    Hermit Crab
    Hooked Slipper Snail
    Brown Turban Snail
    Red Top Snail
    Opaleye
    Monkeyface Pickleback
    Zebraperch
    Crevice Kelpfish

    Review:

    Great area, great collection. Wishing I spent longer here as I barely remember much :p
     
  12. Great Argus

    Great Argus Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    This is probably Pacific Hermit Crab.
     
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  13. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    The sign only said Pagurus sp. so not wanting to assume, but it'd make sense.
     
  14. Great Argus

    Great Argus Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Probably the local Pagurus samuelis, but I think they do have a much larger hermit crab species on display somewhere in that area as well.
     
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  15. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Don't remember, but yes, they do display them twice :)

    For the sake of space though, I decided not to list a species more than once in each section. For example, if there are Bocaccio in two exhibits, I'm only listing Bocaccio once, or if there are two signs for it or such.
     
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  16. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Aviary + Touch Pools and Surrounding Aquarium

    Species List:

    Jacksmelt
    Semipalmated Plover
    Shovelnose Guitarfish
    Killdeer
    Round Stingray
    Thornback
    Bat Ray
    Leopard Shark
    Black-Bellied Plover
    Red-Necked Phalarope
    Shiner Perch
    Red Phalarope
    Ruddy Turnstone
    Snowy Plover
    Semipalmated Sandpiper
    Red Knot
    Black Oystercatcher
    Willet
    Sanderling
    Black-Necked Stilit
    Marbled Godwit
    American Avocet
    Dunlin
    Western Sandpiper
    California Halibut
    Bat Ray
    Starry Flounder
    Topsmelt
    California Mussel
    Califronia Sea Cucumber
    Decorator Crab
    Top Snail
    Black Turban Snail
    Purple Sea Urchin
    Warty Sea Cucumber
    Red Abalone
    Gumboot Chiton
    Barnacle
    California Toad
    Threespine Stickleback
    Califronia Red-Legged Frog
    Laysan Albatross ;)
    Rainbow Trout



    Review:

    I'm a sucker for aviaries and such, and it was definitely a treat to see the albatross! Definitely one of the trip highlights :)!
     
  17. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Splash Zone + Penguins:

    Species List:

    Northern Anchovies
    Spiny Lobster
    California Moray
    Orange Puffball Sponge
    San Diego Dorid
    Sea Lemon Sea Slug
    Yellow-Edged Sea Slug
    Blacksmith
    Senorita
    Jeweled Top Snail
    Salema
    Decorator Crab
    Purple Sea Urchin
    Ocher Star
    Swell Shark (eggs)
    Gumboot Chiton
    Chestnut Cowrie
    Red Rock Shrimp
    Bat Star
    Kellet's Whelk
    Red Abalone
    Hermit Crab
    Opaleye
    Giant Sea Bass
    Blue Rockfish
    Kelp Crab
    Lion's Mane Sea Slug
    Rock Scallop
    Red Volcano Sponge
    Strawberry Anemone
    Blueheaded Goby
    Swell Shark
    Sargo
    Fish-Eating Anemone
    China Rockfish
    California Sea Cucumber
    Kelp Bass
    Black-and-Yellow Rockfish
    California Sheephead
    Horn Shark
    Clownfish (Black)
    Yellow Tang
    Pink Anemonefish
    Bubble-Tip Anemone
    Clownfish (Orange)
    Suqarespot
    Blue Tang
    Devil Damselfish
    Longnose Hawkfish
    Zebrasnout Seahorse
    Ribboned Pipehorse
    Dragon Pipefish
    Spotted Seahorse
    Tigertail Seahorse
    Brain Coral
    Hammer Coral
    Staghorn Coral
    Elephant Skin Coral
    Honeycomb Moray
    Snowflake Moray
    Whitemouth Moray
    Zebra Moray
    Cleaner Shrimp
    Shrimpfish
    Fluted Giant Clam
    Finger Leather
    Flame Angelfish
    Smooth Giant Clam
    Mushroom Polyp
    Northern Clingfish
    Giant Spined Star
    Giant Green Anemonefish
    Crevice Kelpfish
    White-Spotted Anemone
    Reef Surfperch
    Monkeyface-Eel
    Leaping Blennies
    African Penguin

    Review:

    After being forced to sit through a penguin presentation, I thoroughly enjoyed the penguin exhibit, and the view out on the coast, we went through the Splash Zone, which I think is put forwards to the younger age group. The majority of it was probably the least "interesting" part of the aquarium, though I'll admit I enjoyed crawling through the tunnels to see the coral reef fish :p!
     
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  18. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    !Viva Baja! Life on the Edge

    Species List:

    Green Spiny Lobster
    Giant Hawkfish
    Soldierfish
    Panamic Sergeant Major
    Long-Tailed Brush Lizard
    Desert Tortoise
    Common Chuckwalla
    Desert Iguana
    Baja California Rat Snake
    Western Desert Tarantula
    Western Whiptail Lizard
    Hairy Scorpion
    Sunburst Diving Beetle
    King Angelfish
    Spadefish
    Mojarra
    Bluestripe Snapper
    Porkfish
    Sargo
    Salema
    Hermit Crabs
    Pacific Seahorse
    Bluestripe Pipefish
    Spotted Garden Eel
    Green Moray
    Bluespotted Jawfish
    Blennies
    Stone Scorpionfish
    Pacific Creolefish
    Yellowfin Surgeonfish
    Coral Hawkfish
    Redtail Triggerfish
    Cortez Rainbow Wrasse
    Balloonfish
    Lookdown
    Southern Sea Otter (view out to the bay)

    Review:

    I immensely enjoyed this section, and I can only regret that I had not stayed longer.
     
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  19. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Tentacles:

    Species List:

    Bigfin Reef Squid
    Day Octopus (I think Hawaiian? Not sure)
    Two-Spot Octopus
    Wunderpus
    Giant Pacific Octopus
    Chambered Nautilus
    Striped Pyjama Squid
    Flamboyant Cuttlefish
    Common Cuttlefish
    Stumpy Cuttlefish (hatchlings)
    Koch's Bottletail Squid (hatchlings)
    Striped Pyjama Squid (eggs)

    Review:

    Another part immensely enjoyed, seeing part of MBA's extensive cephalopod collection (especially Nautilus) was a big treat. I'll also have to admit that the interactive play station was also enjoyed :p!
     
  20. ZooBinh

    ZooBinh Well-Known Member 5+ year member

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    Open Sea + Fragile Seas

    Species List:

    Pacific Sardine
    Pacific Mackerel
    Purple-Striped Jellyfish
    Moon Jellyfish
    Sea Gooseberry
    Spotted Comb Jelly
    Pacific Sea Nettle
    Cross Jelly
    Black Skipjack
    Scalloped Hammerhead Shark
    Ocean Sunfish
    Green Sea Turtle
    Yellowfin Tuna
    Pelagic Stingray
    Pacific Bonito
    Dolphinfish
    Northern Anchovy
    Black Oystercatcher
    Common Murre
    Tufted Puffin
    Common Murre
    Pigeon Guillemot
    Pelagic Red Crab

    Review:

    Definitely the best part of the aquarium, and the most nostalgic from what I remember as a young child. The sheer size of the tank is just jawdropping, and getting life ticks such as Ocean Sunfish was really satisfying. I also regret that I did not spend enough time here.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    This wraps up the whole species list! I did the best I could do off of signage, and I hope you all enjoy my efforts :)!