Jellyfish at the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas – New Orleans

Audubon Aquarium of the AmericasMany years ago, in my marine biologist days, I studied jellyfish at the National Marine Fisheries Service laboratory in Oxford, Maryland. I’ve been fascinated with them ever since. I recall the first time seeing them in a large aquarium – in Monterey, California – and have watched as more and more aquariums have installed jellyfish setups themselves.

Jellyfish (yes, I know technically they should be called Sea Jellies since they are not fish, but old habits die hard) are not easy to keep in aquariums. They have very little control over where they go other than to backstroke up or down or side to side. Mainly they just go where the current goes. In aquariums that usually means straight into the filter. Nothing like a mushy, globular, nematocyst-laden carbon filter to gum up your tank.

So it took some engineering, some of which I developed myself in those good old days, to figure out how to keep jellyfish happy. And that makes me happy.

The aquarium also had the usual complement of sharks, skates, rays, and fish of all kinds. Not a bad aquarium at all, and one I’ll talk more about in the future. Check out the other aquariums I’ve visited all over the world.

David J. Kent is the author of Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity (2013) and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World (2016) (both Fall River Press). He has also written two e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate. His next book, Lincoln: The Man Who Saved America, is scheduled for release in summer 2017.

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5 thoughts on “Jellyfish at the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas – New Orleans

    • Seems it opened a few months after I was last in Tokyo, and I was not far away in Asakusa too. Will put it on my list for the next trip, if and whenever that is.

      • It’s not all that big, but it has some nice displays including the apparatus they use for growing the jellyfish. Interesting display was of “grass eels.” (I think that was what they were called.) Took some photos. I’ll post them when I next have access to a proper computer.

        • In a previous life I maintained all the aquarium systems for a marine fisheries lab in which we did behavioral experiments, so I’ve seen a lot of behind the wall filtering and pumping apparatuses. I still think they are so cool. Definitely post some photos.

          Hope you’re having a good time.

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