Mystic Aquarium keeping animals cool

Aquarium keeping animals cool during heat wave
Published: Jul. 22, 2022 at 6:51 PM EDT
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MYSTIC, CT (WFSB) - The fierce summer heat is forcing many of us to find different ways to cool off.

But what about our ocean friends at the aquarium?

Eyewitness News got an inside look on how the animals at Mystic Aquarium are cooling off.

The animals are doing the same thing humans are doing right now.

They’re drinking lots of water, and at times eating ice.

It’s all fun and games at the aquarium, especially if you’re a beluga.

“I like the beluga whales cause it kept smudging its face on the glass. And they were cute,” said Aashna Gupta.

Aashna is cooling off with the whales. It’s been about 7 years since she stopped by the aquarium.

“She was like one year old when we first visited it. We wanted to revisit our memories now she’s turning 8. We wanted to see it,” said Deepti Gupta.

The colony of 33 African penguins is out in the sun.

“A big misconception about penguins is that they live on ice and snow, but our penguins prefer the summer season.  And a nice hot day like the day is the preferred climate for them,” said Tracy Camp, Supervisor of African penguins.

All eyes are on these endangered penguins.

If it gets too hot for them, they know what to do. Hide under their shade, hang out by the sprinklers, or: “but just like the rest of us if they really need to cool down they go for a nice refreshing dip in the pool,” said Camp.

Down by the Arctic Coast and Pacific Northwest exhibits, the seals are also hydrating nonstop.

“The water is always kept at a steady 55 degrees so they are actually the coolest they can be in the water,” said Mairim Martinez, Supervisor of Arctic Coast and Pacific Northwest Habitat.

The fur, harbor and spotted seals also have a hose to play with, or they munch on ice that’s constantly being added.

“They always have access to shelter. They can go inside where we have fans going and we can keep them a little cooler. But they prefer to be out on exhibit with all of their friends,” said Martinez. “So you are going to notice there are pools with ice water they can jump in and out of.”

No matter the weather, the Mystic team monitors the animals to make sure they too stay chill in this heat wave.

If you want to cool off with the penguins, you can go in for free until September 5.

You can reserve a time online here.