Guests at Save The Bay’s Exploration Center and Aquarium can bite into facts about local sharks this July. The monthly programming theme, “Stunning Sharks of Narragansett Bay,” helps guests learn all about local shark species while tackling a self-guided and shark-themed scavenger hunt, craft and storytime before visiting the aquarium’s shark tank, where they can see and touch a smooth dogfish shark. The Exploration Center and Aquarium on Easton’s Beach in Newport is open daily, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“While many visitors tend to know that sharks are elasmobranches – meaning that their skeletons are made of cartilage instead of bone – fewer know that some sharks have the ability to detect electromagnetic fields,” said Save The Bay Lead Aquarist Adam Kovarsky.
“We know that visitors to the aquarium this month will learn even more interesting facts about local sharks from our skilled staff, the activities we offer, by watching the sharks in the tanks, or even by touching them!”
Visitors can observe sharks at multiple stages of development at the aquarium, thanks to Save The Bay’s “Hatch Out” program, which supports the breeding and growth of chain dogfish sharks and little skates. Visitors also have the opportunity to pet a shark at one of the center’s three touch tanks.
Like all species in the aquarium, the sharks residing at the Exploration Center and Aquarium this July won’t be there for long! The center’s marine animal collection is transitional, sustainable and locally sourced. No critter, as long as it is strong and healthy, stays at the center for more than a year before being assessed for survival and released back into Narragansett Bay, including this month’s new arrivals: horseshoe crabs, flounder, oyster toadfish, black sea bass, cunner, mummichogs, flounder, moon snails, whelks, periwinkles, shore shrimp and more.
Guests who are interested in getting an even closer look at Bay creatures can purchase tickets to this month’s Feeding Frenzy, taking place on Thursday, July 18, at 5 p.m. This exciting after-hours event allows guests to participate in the aquarium creatures’ favorite time of day: feeding time. Tickets ($10 general admission; $8 for Save The Bay members) can be purchased at savebay.org/feedingfrenzy.
The Exploration Center and Aquarium is located in the Easton’s Beach Rotunda at 175 Memorial Blvd. in Newport. The center is open daily 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., from Memorial Day to Labor Day. General admission to the Aquarium is $8; $7 for seniors and college students with ID; and free for children under 3 and Save The Bay Family Members. The Exploration Center and Aquarium also offers free general admission to all military and first responders with current ID, as well as a reduced admission of $7 for their guests. For more information about the Exploration Center and Aquarium, visit savebay.org/aquarium or call 401-324-6020.