On National Wildlife Day, Discover How the Texas State Aquarium Is Helping Save Local Species
September 4, 2018
CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – The average visitor to the Texas State Aquarium is sure to be in awe of the 460+ species of animals on exhibit, from sharks and sloths to flamingos and otters, and may even learn something about how they can help protect these species in the wild. But what they may not know is how their admission to the not-for-profit aquarium isn’t just giving them an up-close and educational look at species from near and far, it’s helping to support the rescue and preservation of hundreds of wild animals and habitats in their own “backyard,” the Gulf of Mexico.
Today, on National Wildlife Day, the Texas State Aquarium is reminding its guests, members, and other supporters of the important wildlife conservation work they make possible. The Aquarium’s Wildlife Rescue Center, for example, takes in hundreds of ill and injured sea turtles, shorebirds, raptors and marine mammals each year. In 2018 so far, more than 1,000 endangered sea turtles have been taken in by the rescue team, and after treatment and rehabilitation, released back into their natural habitat.
Aquarium proceeds are also directed to support wildlife conservation and research projects in the Gulf of Mexico. In the past five years, more than $500,000 has been given through the Wildlife Care, Conservation, and Research Fund (WCCR) to support tagging and tracking sharks, studying the movements of critical fish populations, eliminating invasive lionfish and examining the genetic composition of Kemp’s ridley sea turtles, among other research efforts. The Aquarium has also supported important wildlife conservation projects through WCCR, including donating $75,000 to date towards VaquitaCPR, an international undertaking to save the critically-endangered vaquita porpoise.
Funds from Aquarium’s guest admission, membership and donations also go to environmentally-focused educational events and programs like Seafood Wars, SeaCamp and Adopt-A-Beach cleanups, where the Aquarium helps organize volunteers to remove hundreds of tons of trash from local coastlines.