Thursday, January 19, 2012

MOTE Aquarium

MOTE Marine Laboratory was on our list of "educational activities" during our recent trip to Florida.  We had driven by the research facility/aquarium many times on our way to Sarasota and finally decided that we should spend the day there (plus, we had to justify an educational absence to our school!).  Usually when we visit Florida, it's very hot, so the temperate weather was a bonus.  We decided to combine our tour of the facilities with a boat tour of the bay, an "eco-tour" is how the brochure described it. 

From what we were able to observe (and read about MOTE), the laboratory is world-class.  They are the only research facility in the US with a congressionally-appointed shark research program. 

first we toured the "aquarium portion of MOTE"

we loved the touch tanks!

Emma's favorite was the stingray pool

we stopped on a small uninhabited island in Sarasota Bay (see how much taller Josh is than me?)

on the boat, our on-board biologist showed us several native species of marine life

many different crabs live in the bay

and urchins

on on-board biologist

this hideous thing was a batfish (he had legs and fins)

We really enjoyed our time at MOTE.  If you have the chance, it's totally worth your time to take a peek at what's lying beneath the surface of the Florida waterways!

At Mote, you can explore the secrets of the sea through touch pools, viewable-working labs and high-tech interactive exhibits that showcase the world-renowned research of Mote Marine Laboratory. See sharks, dolphins, manatees and sea turtles, along with more than 100 other species of marine life.(from their website)

1600 Ken Thompson Pkwy
Sarasota, FL 34236
(941) 388-4441


  1. Yeah. I could have done without the batfish photo. Ha ha ha ha ha :)

    I gottta say, your kids are just STUNNING.

    And good job making vacation educational!

  2. That looks really interesting. I've never seen or heard of a Batfish before, not good looking is it!