Traditional aquariums of old focused mainly on entertainment as the way to show people what lies beneath the surface, and to expand awareness. Today, we do better. Today’s aquarium focuses on education while engaging visitors with a variety of exhibits, technologies and experiences that do not need to rely on animal shows for impact.
The conservation aquariums of today actively participate in working to achieve sustainable aquatic ecosystem health in systems both local and distant. They contribute with research, studies and programs that expand global knowledge. They integrate with school systems for enhancing lessons, they work with post-secondary institutions to give access to important facilities needed for research. They are staffed with passionate individuals who are working to protect, to understand, and to preserve life that exists under the surface and around the edges of aquatic ecosystems.
The initial role of the visitor to conservation aquariums is passive; they come to experience the exhibits, spend the day with family or friends or simply by themselves to enjoy the facility. However, for many, through understanding, awareness and access to expert knowledge, visitors become active conservationists. Small actions done by many make for large impacts down stream. The conservation aquariums of today are the catalysts for action for our global waters.