Tentacles

Tentacles, presented by the Robert J. Kleberg, Jr. and Helen C. Kleberg Foundation, takes guests out to the deep waters of the open ocean and places them in the midst of jellyfish, octopus, cuttlefish, and other strange and wonderful species.

This dark environment showcases the deepest depths of the ocean, where sunlight can’t reach, but live thrives nonetheless. In this unfamiliar world, guests are treated to an up-close look at these unusual animals, and in some cases, even the opportunity to touch them. Several species of jellyfish are illuminated to give our guests an up-close at these floating phantoms – without fear of being stung. At our moon jelly touch pool, gently pet these delicate and translucent creatures and learn more about their fascinating features from our knowledgeable staff.

Several other tentacled creatures reside here, including the chambered nautilus and cuttlefish. But the star of the show is Otis, the giant Pacific octopus. This highly-intelligent cephalopod changes colors and stretches out all eight of his arms during his daily enrichment sessions with trainers.

The Tentacles exhibit aims to highlight these in a species in a way that will start a conversation about an important environmental issue: marine debris. Debris such as plastic bags, bottles and monofilament looks similar to jellies, a major component of several sea turtle species’ diets. Eating these items can have a devastating impact on the health of sea turtles and many other ocean creatures.

Animals in this Exhibit

  • Giant pacific octopus


    The Giant Pacific is the largest and longest-living of any octopus species, weighing an average of 100 pounds and measuring 16 feet across. .

  • Moon Jelly


    This common jellyfish species in translucent, clearing revealing the anatomy inside its bell. Because of its limited swimming ability, the moon jelly often goes wherever the current takes it.

  • Pacific sea nettle


    These jellies have a golden brown bell and long, trailing tentacles. Their sting can be irritating to humans but is rarely dangerous.

  • Blubber jellyfish


    These jellies, which can grow up to 45 centimeters in diameter, have 8 stumpy arms which they used to catch plankton. Each of their 8 arms has a tiny mouth at each end, which can transport food to their stomachs.

  • Pharaoh cuttlefish


    Like many other cephalopods, the cuttlefish has the ability to change color, an adaptation it uses for hunting or camouflage.

  • Chambered nautilus


    This cephalopod has an inner shell layer that forms a nearly perfect equiangular spiral, making it a popular symbol in art and mathematics.