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penguin Long Island Aquarium

More than one million people have visited the Long Island Aquarium since it first opened as Atlantis Marine World in 2000.  

Located on the Peconic River in Riverhead it is easily one of Long Island’s most popular year-round attractions.

But even the die-hard fans with season passes who return often might not know some of these facts about the aquarium.

sea lion Long Island Aquarium

1. The aquarium was almost built in Port Jefferson, but environmental and space concerns led builders to choose Riverhead.

Credit: Cyndi Murray file photo

2. The aquarium is home to a 20,000 gallon coral reef display tank, which is considered one of the largest all-living coral displays in the western Hemisphere.

Shark tank Long Island Aquarium

3. The aquarium gets its sea water delivered several times a week via tanker truck from Southampton’s Shinnecock Inlet, which opens into the Atlantic Ocean.

Photo courtesy of the Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center | Children enjoy the aquarium’s sleepover with the sharks.

4. You can go to the aquarium for free on your birthdayGuests get FREE admission within 7 days of their birthday (before or after). Just present valid ID (driver’s license, birth certificate or passport) to take advantage of this offer.

Fish being inspected by an animal caretaker before being fed to the animals (Credit: LI Aquarium)

5. Every fish fed to the animals at the aquarium is restaurant quality and could be eaten by people. The caretakers examine every piece before presenting it to the animals.

Baby cuttlefish being raised in a tank (Credit: LI Aquarium)

6. The aquarium helps propagate numerous species of fish, as well as marine invertebrates like jellyfish, shrimp and cuttlefish. These are then provided to other aquariums.

An underwater wedding taking place in the shark tank (Credit: LI Aquarium)

7. There have been five underwater weddings held in the shark tank since the aquarium opened.

Get your picture taken with a sea lion (Credit: LI Aquarium)

8. You can now have your picture taken with a penguin or a sea lion at the aquarium as a keepsake to remember your visit. 

For more information call (631) 208-9200 x426 or visit The Long Island Aquarium is located at 431 East Main Street in Riverhead.