Thursday, April 8, 2010

Great Lakes Aquarium

Kira and I went to the Great Lakes Aquarium today as our daily special-spring-break-activity.  I haven't been there in quite awhile and I really like it.  They took down the seahorse exhibit (darn!) and are in the process of putting up a new exhibit that will open in May.  Here are the highlights from today:

We watched this duck mercilessly chase all the other ducks and birds in the aviary.  He is a Golden-eye and he was hilarious.  Even the female Golden-eye didn't want to have anything to do with him.  She would actually fly out of the water and jump over him if he came near her.  They can really swim fast and we could watch their feet under the water.  Super cute!  Kira thinks they were probably playing tag and he was it.  Looked more like Mrs. Goldeneye was saying, "Call the Police!" rather than "Ha ha, can't catch me!"

 I love the aquarium because it's a great attraction for Duluth, it's beautiful, and educational, but I have to admit it really makes me hungry.  All those big fat delicious fish close enough to grab.  MMmmmmmm....

You can feed them Trout Chow (I'm not even kidding) and they have learned to come right to the top to get it.  You could literally just grab one out of the water.  I see this:

And I think this:

Guess what we're having for dinner?  Just kidding.  (I had fish for lunch)  But I seriously think that the aquarium could make TONS of money if they sold smoked fish in the gift shop.  I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks they look delicious.

Kira's favorite thing at the aquarium is the touch pools.  You can stick your hands in a shallow pool and pet sting rays, you know, the thing that KILLED Steve Irwin.  Yeah, you can let your little children pet them.

There is an aquarium worker that stands close to all the children and when they stick their little hands in the water she yells,  "DON'T TOUCH THE TAIL!" if they get too close to the tail.  I asked what would happen if they touched the tail and she told me that the stingers are cut off, but they grow back like a finger nail (ewwww) so there is a little tiny barb that could give a frightening little poke. They feel really cool.  Like velvet.

There is another pool that you can stick your hand in and pet a sturgeon.  The sturgeon is an ANCIENT fish.  They were around before there even were great lakes!    The ones we petted were fairly small, only about a foot long, but we saw some bigger ones in the big tanks that were around five feet long.  HUGE AND SCARY.  

Kira also liked this bird:  

He was part of the Amazon Basin exhibit and one of the workers took him out of his cage to show us.  He loved Kira.  He kept putting his foot out to her because he wanted to go to her, but because he has a beak that is powerful enough to break a broomstick, they don't let the little children hold him.  Kira would have taken him home with her if she could.  I was charmed by him too, but after I saw how large and splattery his poop was I didn't think he was all that great. 

Tomorrow: Bowling!


  1. Dana McKibbage WaldbilligApril 8, 2010 at 7:01 PM

    Where are we bowling???

  2. I think if went there I would never swim in Rainy Lake again...last year I saw a picture of a guy holding a record sturgeon (it was a fat that the guy's hands were sunk into it's body)and I had a hard time swimming without thinking it was swimming under me or lurking under the dock...oh and you know that fish with the light on it's head that attacks Nemo in Finding Nemo?....FREAKS ME OUT!I know it's in Rainy...Oh I could go on and on...HIPPOS! I read that they are crazy mean and the #1 animal killer of people in Africa...they too reside in Rainy Lake...SHARKS! WHALES! CROCODILES! ALLIGATORS! EELS!

  3. Amazing how large splattery poop will take the shine off a cute and fuzzy pet.

  4. We are bowling at that place in Hermantown, by the movie theater after lunch. See you there???

  5. In re: the giant bird:

    My high school girlfriend had a gargantuan umbrella cockatoo that HATED me. This thing was the size of a chicken, with a level of unrestrained hostility toward me comparable to that of a grizzly bear on PCP.

    When I was over at her house, the bird would occasionally break wood into little chunks with its beak. While looking at me.

  6. People who say animals don't feel emotion have never seen how much a bird can hate.


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