On September 10th 2017, Hurricane Irma made landfall in the Florida Keys, devastating our string of islands. Aquarium Encounters was closed from September 9th until December 15th. In those three months we worked tirelessly to rebuild all that was damaged. Our staff removed debris off the aquarium’s property, repaired tanks that had been damaged, painted our facility, set up all of our equipment that was taken down for storm prep. Thankfully our facility took most of our damage cosmetically, and all of our animals in our tanks, and those dry on land, survived!
In the immediate days after Hurricane Irma hit Marathon, our dedicated team of employees that stayed through the storm, including our owner, worked diligently to keep our generators running, pumps pumping, and fish fed! These amazing individuals were also here to clear the roads, help those in our community that lost homes, as well as help those that needed assistance clearing and cleaning their properties. There was a real sense of community down here, and everyone lent a helping hand to anyone that needed it! We want to thank everyone for the well wishes, thoughts and prayers, which were sent our way. We would also like to apologize for not sending this email out sooner. After the storm we have had a few changes to staff as well as a lot to catch up on, but we are up and running better than before!
Since the hurricane we have added seahorses and spiny lobsters! The seahorse tank is home to the Lined Seahorses as well as a few baby horse shoe crabs. Our seahorse tank is nestled in between our upper and lower level of our tide pool touch tank. Kids have easier access to the tide pool touch tank critters at the lower level. Our Florida Spiny Lobster exhibit is also interactive! We offer lobster food available at the bait shack, for $3 a cup. This exhibit is located on our island close to the floating bridge, across from Stingray cove and backs the lagoon.
We look forward to having you all back at the aquarium this year, and hope you enjoy all the new additional animals and animal feeds! Thank you again for all your support.