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Main Gallery

From the deeper waters of the bay to the salt water marsh and the drier upland habitats, San Diego has amazing wildlife!  Explore more than 20 exhibits and come nose to nose with local marine life, reptiles and other native creatures.

Look for these animals!

Seahorses, jellies, eels, sharks, lobsters, crabs, octopus, sea stars, snakes, lizards and more!

Did You Know? is a series of brief posts designed to encourage you to care as much as we do about coastal animals, plants and habitats.

Did You Know? Steelhead Trout

Did you know that Steelhead Trout have super strength, speed and leaping ability? Steelheads can go from 0 to 23 Miles Per Hour in a second. By comparison, a 2015 Lamborghini Huracan goes 62 mph in 3.2 seconds or about as fast as a Steelhead Trout.  –read more here



Sea Urchins’ Teeth and Aristotle’s Lantern

Did you know? The Purple Sea Urchin has protective large spines, pincers (called pedicellariae), tube feet and five teeth, arranged in a circle at the bottom of its body, that it uses to scrape algae from rock surfaces?  At the Living Coast, you can find Purple Sea Urchins (like those pictured here) and Red Sea Urchins in the Bay East area of our Discovery Center Gallery. –read more here


Did You Know? Tarantula

tarantulaDid you know that Tarantulas will go bald on their thorax as they age? Did you know that Tarantulas have retractable claws, just like cats? Tarantulas also have tiny hairs on the back of their abdomen and back legs that will stick to a predator if disturbed. –read more here



Did you Know? Moray Eels

Here are five things you need to know about Moray Eels: 1) The moray eel gets its color from the protective mucus it secretes that covers its body. This mucus contains a substance that is toxic to some species. 2)This fish has poor eyesight but a very good sense of smell. 3)Morays hatch in Baja California’s warmer water and the larvae drift north to southern California. 4)They can live up to 30 years. 5) Although the species name, mordax, means “prone to bite,” these animals are actually very timid and do not intentionally bite humans. –read more here