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Sending Our Thanks Up River
After Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, the Audubon Aquarium received an outpouring of support from our friends in the zoo and aquarium community. Some of our animals were temporarily housed in other facilities, while others were donated to us by Aquariums with extra animals. Buck, Emma and our penguin colony were all shipped out to Monterey Bay Aquarium. Mydas, our large green sea turtle, spent some time at Moody Gardens in Galveston, Texas.
This week, we will be able to repay the favor to the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in Dubuque, Iowa. After Katrina, the museum donated most of the freshwater animals you see in our Mississippi Gallery.
This week John Hewitt, the Director of Husbandry, and Christa Lobue, Curator of Fishes, will be transporting some of our surplus animals in the Aquarium’s Fish Transport Unit (FTU) up to Dubuque. The FTU is a 1,000 gallon tank on a flatbed trailer, equipped with generators and all the necessary life support needed to maintain a healthy environment for fish as they travel long distances. On Tuesday morning, the FTU will be filled with brown sharks, tarpon, cownose rays, black drum, sheepshead, green moray eels and pompano. John and Christa will then make the 1,000 mile journey to take the fish to their new home in Iowa.
We are fortunate to have our own FTU (see picture) and we are happy help the Aquarium in Dubuque in thanks for their aid when we needed it most. If you make the trip up the Mississippi River, be sure to stop by the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium to visit some of our old friends.