Visit an aquarium, planetarium, and natural history museum—all under one living roof.
Water Planet features an ever-changing cast of fish, reptiles, amphibians, insects, and more—all organized by adaptations to water. Seven clusters of tanks highlight animals that have evolved fascinating methods of feeding, movement, reproduction, defense, sensing their surroundings, surviving in deserts, and living both in and out of water.
In the movement cluster, colorful cowfish use their dorsal and tail fins to "hover" in place.
Going to Extremes
Beaded lizards and gila monsters represent the expert water conservation adaptations of desert dwellers, while leafy and weedy seadragons drift gracefully at the opposite end of spectrum, requiring large bodies of water to survive.
Columns of ethereal jellyfish reveal surprising ideas about how salinity affects movement.
In the tank devoted to feeding adaptations, a paddlefish—one of the strangest and oldest species found in this country—startles visitors with an enormous rostrum and a gaping mouth designed for filter feeding.
Be mesmerized by the brilliant colors of tropical fish, the grace of sharks and rays, and the busy waddling of African penguins. Our webcams stream 24 hours a day.
It's feeding time at the Academy—witness the intense changes in coloration that accompany a dwarf cuttlefish's crab-attack.