DEEP Explorations

DEEP (Discover, Explore, Enjoy, Protect) Explorations invites explorers into an immersive, insider’s view of the work zoo and aquarium professionals do each day. Each explorer will learn how to discover, explore, enjoy and protect the world around them.

Registration closes two weeks ahead of the start date for every DEEP Exploration — all paperwork must be completed, and full payment processed at least two weeks prior to the Exploration.

Register for DEEP Explorations

Download Parent Packet

DEEP Explorations FAQs

  • What is DEEP Explorations?

    DEEP Explorations invites explorers into an immersive, insider’s view of the exciting work zoo and aquarium professionals do each day. This summer, our explorers will Discover, Explore, Enjoy and learn to Protect (DEEP) the amazing world around them.

  • How is DEEP Explorations different from SeaCamp?

    As the Aquarium has grown, our mission has evolved as well. DEEP Explorations is a full immersion experience designed to change lives and build a deeper appreciation for wildlife care and conservation.  Deep Explorations will build upon the SeaCamp tradition of hands-on education while adding a significant behind the scenes, insider’s view of how STEM is put into action. Explorers will work alongside TSA staff to learn the ins and outs of working at a zoo or aquarium.  They will help train some of the animals at Wild Flight, prepare a daily diet and feed some of the TSA resident animals, and learn the skills needed to rescue and rehabilitate wildlife, among a variety of other exciting, educational activities!

  • Is SeaCamp still available?

    No. After a successful tenure of providing campers with an enriching week of summer, SeaCamp is retiring and making room for DEEP Explorations.

  • Why was DEEP Explorations scheduled as described below?

    These times frames were chosen to maximize the experience for the explorer and make it a positive interaction with our animal residents.

  • What ages may participate in DEEP Explorations?

    We have created opportunities for explorers who have completed Kindergarten through 12th grade. Please see below for each age group’s offerings. Specific explorations are designed to maximize engagement and provide a positive experience for all.

     

  • Are scholarships available?

    A limited number of scholarships will be available.  Apply for available scholarships here.

  • Is before and after care available?

    Before and after-care are not available. Please see below for DEEP Exploration hours.

Exploration Opportunities

  • STEM to the Rescue!


    K - 3rd Grade

    9 a.m. - 3 p.m. daily
    August 3-7, 2020

    STEM to the Rescue will be offered for Explorers who have completed kindergarten and grade 1 or grades 2 and 3 in two separate groups.

Explorers who have completed kindergarten through 3rd grade will work alongside our dedicated TSA staff to discover the inspirational world of wildlife conservation and rescue.  Explorers will learn and practice the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills and tools it takes to save, take care of, and release animals back into their natural habitats.

During the week your explorer will:

  • Get up close to some of our resident rescued animals
  • Meet TSA specialists responsible for the care and well-being of our lovable residents
  • Learn the STEM skills a wildlife rescuer uses to help injured animals
  • Help prepare enrichment for some of our animals and observe how they interact and engage
  • Have their very own “REEL” fishing experience in the beautiful waters of Corpus Christi from the TSA dock
  • Attend our exciting Wild Flight and Dolphin presentations featuring some of our most talented residents
  • Enjoy a day at the beach engineering animal rescue equipment and building sandcastles!
  • Enjoy our H-E-B Splash Park – the first zero-depth wetscape in the Coastal Bend!
  • Be an adventurer on the low-level ropes course!
  • Take home a commemorative T-shirt. 

Nonmember $245
Member $220

Register for DEEP Explorations: STEM to the Rescue!

  • Aquarium 101


    4th - 5th Grade

    9 a.m. - 3 p.m. daily
    July 6-10 · July 13-17 · July 20-24 · July 27-31

    Explorers must have completed 4th or 5th grade

Work alongside our dedicated TSA staff for a week of Aquarium and Marine Biology 101. Explorers will get an insider’s view on how to care for and maintain an exhibit for aquatic animals, how to prepare diets for and feed TSA’s animal friends, and even how to train some of our animals in basic behaviors. During the week, Explorers will venture out into the wild and discover how the skills used to care for the animals inside TSA are similar at other locations.  This week is filled with land and water adventures that will challenge all your Explorer’s physical and mental abilities. Explorers will get a commemorative rash guard to take home. 

Nonmember $540
Member $490

Register for DEEP Explorations: Aquarium 101

  • Aquarium 101: Weekly Schedule at a Glance*

    Monday

    Native Habitats & Animals 

    Activities:

    • Conduct a Field Expedition at Goose Island State Park OR at Camp Aranzazu
    • Learn Archery OR traverse a high ropes challenge course

    Tuesday

    TSA Habitats & Animal Wellness

    Activities:

    • Take care of TSA’s Jungle with horticulture staff
    • Surfing on Padre Island OR kayaking and stand-up paddling at Lake Corpus Christi

    Wednesday

    Animal Care & Training

    Activities:

    • Select enrichment for river otters and observe their interactions with marine mammals’ staff
    • Feed our flamingos
    • Prepare diets for and feed our fish behind the scenes
    • Train with Wild Flight staff

    Thursday

    Water Quality at TSA and Beyond

    Activities:

    • Monitor water quality behind the scenes with TSA staff
    • See our Wildlife Rescue Center
    • Experience water quality and animal care at Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Redfish Hatchery
    • Special encounters with reptiles and baby sharks

    Friday

    Design a TSA Exhibit

    Activities:

    • Closely observe TSA animals and habitats
    • Special encounters with reptiles and birds
    • Lunch with TSA Animal Care staff
    • Design a proposed TSA exhibit and show it off to Aquarium staff

    *Activities may be subject to change due to safety concerns, severe weather or forces beyond TSA’s control

  • Junior Keeper


    6th - 8th Grade

    July 6-10 · July 13-17 · July 20-24 · July 27-31
    9 a.m. - 3 p.m. daily

    Explorers must have completed 6th, 7th, or 8th grade

Explorers will work side by side with TSA staff to learn how they do their jobs and the skills needed to care for the aquarium residents. As junior keepers, your Explorers will discover how to train an animal, clean and keep the habitats healthy, and prepare and feed a proper diet to the animals who make their homes at TSA.  Explorers will venture out and try SCUBA, just like our professional divers! This week is filled with land and water adventures that will challenge all your Explorer’s physical and mental abilities.  If your camper is interested in one day working at a zoo or aquarium, this will be a great introduction to aquatic animal husbandry and a fun, new way to see Texas State Aquarium! Explorers will also get their own snorkel gear (mask, snorkel, fins) to take home. 

Nonmember $625
Member $563

Register for DEEP Explorations: Junior Keeper

  • Junior Keeper: Weekly Schedule at a Glance*

    Monday

    Animal Habitats

    Activities:

    • Conduct a Field Expedition at Goose Island State Park OR at Camp Aranzazu
    • Learn archery OR traverse a high ropes challenge course
    • Take care of TSA’s Jungle with horticulture staff

    Tuesday

    Animal Training and Wellness

    Activities:

    • Monitor water quality behind the scenes with TSA staff
    • Prep animal diets in the commissary with animal care staff
    • Meet a dolphin trainer & go behind the scenes for a private training session and photo
    • Engage in animal care behind the scenes with Wild Flight staff & be a part of their Wild Flight Show
    • Train a live animal

    Wednesday

    SCUBA Diving

    Activities:

    • Meet TSA’s Master Diver to learn about SCUBA equipment & diving careers behind the scenes
    • Tend a dive in TSA exhibits with Dive staff
    • Practice SCUBA diving firsthand with a Discover SCUBA experience

    Thursday

    Veterinary Care & Rescue

    Activities:

    • Experience taking radiographs, blood samples, sonograms and more with TSA’s Vet and Vet Tech in our animal clinic
    • See our wildlife rescue hospital
    • Sharpen medical skills in a TSA-wide animal rescue challenge

    Friday

    Aquarist & Animal Care

    Activities:

    • Become involved in marine animal care behind the scenes of the Gulf of Mexico Exhibits with animal care staff
    • Special encounter with a marine invertebrate
    • Animal collection trip onboard the Archimedes in Corpus Christi Bay

    *Activities may be subject to change due to safety concerns, severe weather or forces beyond TSA’s control

  • Destination STEM


    9th - 12th Grade

    Full-day, overnight experience

    June 1-5 · June 8-12 · June 15-19 · June 22-26

    Destination STEM participants must have completed grades 9 – 12 (ages 14 – 18).

Explorers will hit the road and discover the science that TSA participates in around South Texas.  They will track wild birds, census fish populations in local lakes, and conduct research on sharks for evidence of metals.  Discover how the skills and research done at TSA matches work done by research scientists around the region. This camp provides unique land and water adventures that will challenge all of your child’s physical and mental abilities, and inspire them to pursue future STEM careers. Explorers will get a commemorative backpack to take home.  

See our Destination STEM FAQs for more information!

Nonmember $850
Member $765

Register for DEEP Explorations: Destination STEM

  • Destination STEM: Weekly Schedule at a Glance*

    Monday

    Research at Texas State Aquarium

    Activities:

    • Behind the scenes with Wild Flight Animal Care Team
    • Work alongside TSA’s Animal Wellness Specialist
    • Meet with a dolphin trainer
    • Behind the scenes of the Gulf of Mexico Exhibits

    Sleep At: Own Home

    Tuesday

    Animal Conservation at Partner Organizations

    Activities:

    • Participate in a bird banding project and honeybee conservation at Nueces Delta Preserve
    • Behind the scenes at San Antonio Zoo

    Sleep At: San Antonio Zoo

    Wednesday

    Research on Wild Populations & Animal Conservation

    Activities:

    • Engage in shark tissue research in Dr. Jessica Dutton’s Laboratory at Texas State University
    • Wetlands & Discovery Hall Tour of Spring Lake at the Meadows Center
    • Evening Snorkel Tour of Spring Lake

    Sleep At: Texas State University Dorms

    Thursday

    Habitat Conservation & Biodiversity of Texas

    Activities:

    • Horseback ride to observe and collect data on a watershed habitat with Southern Trails Ranch
    • Learn archery skills with Southern Trails Ranch
    • Fishing & nocturnal hike for an animal species survey at Lake Corpus Christi State Park

    Sleep At: Tent Camping at Lake Corpus Christi State Park

    Friday

    Animal Veterinary Care

    Activities:

    • Participate in animal care work with researchers at Texas A&M Kingsville’s Veterinary Technology Program
    • Attend Shows and conduct animal observations at Texas State Aquarium

    Sleep At: Own Home

    *Activities may be subject to change due to safety concerns, severe weather or forces beyond TSA’s control

A refund of 50% of the cost can be accommodated prior to the two-week registration deadline. However, if you decide to withdraw from this program after the two-week deadline, your payment will not be refunded. The success of this program depends on complete participation and payment from all registrants.