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Travel Ideas: Chicago Shedd Aquarium in Chicago

By: Tracy Grinnell

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Want to have breakfast with a sea otter, or hang out with a hermit crab? Then stop into the Chicago Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Ill. Since 1930, the aquarium has been dedicated to bringing the world's aquatic life to Chicago and conserving it. The Shedd Aquarium's exhibits encompass a complex structure of environmental habitats and conservation issues. Visitors can tour the top of a Caribbean reef, watch a behind-the-scenes explanation on how the animals are cared for and see a year's worth of the Amazon all in a day.

Meet Shedd's favorite belugas, who come from the Hudson Bay in Central Canada. Naluark, a male and three females, Mauyak, Puiji and Kayavak range in age from 10 to 17 years old, and live in the Oceanarium's Secluded Bay, an 18-foot deep habitat that holds 400,000 gallons of filtered saltwater and is kept at 50 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit. The belugas eat 40 to 80 pounds of food per day, including two kinds of fish - herring and capelin - and squid. Belugas also love to be rubbed and scratched, just as they do with each other in the wild.

When you're done hanging out with these Caspar-like beauties, you can stop by and say hello to the multitude of harbor seals, penguins and dolphins on site. After that, check out the sea horse symphony, which is the world's largest exhibit on sea horses.

Rates: Adults, $15; Children (3-11), $11; Seniors (65 and older), $11; Children 2 and under, free.

For more information, call: 312-939-2438 or access the Web site at www.sheddnet.org.

Photo Caption:
See the equines of the ocean at the Shedd's Symphony of Sea Horses.

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Travel Ideas: Chicago Shedd Aquarium in Chicago




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