Today we took advantage of Doors Open Days to hit the Fluvarium (where we also picked up our annual pass and one for whatever lucky family wins our giveaway!)
The kids and I had an awesome time exploring, playing, and learning.
First we had to explore the pathway to the Fluvarium itself, and when we crossed the bridge, what did we see but ducks! With strange faces… ours!
Once inside we made our way to the second level where you can view the river from above. There’s a great under-river live cam you can also view, but my kids wouldn’t let me get a picture of it! There are some really great exhibits on this floor and your kids will have fun:
Exploring the world
Feeding the dragonfly
And running around like kids do, exploring everything – especially the stuff they can touch!
My favourite exhibit which I’d like to return and visit again (maybe while the kids are in school) was the one of watersheds and the history of development in St. John’s.
In addition to featuring some great historical information about St. John’s and insight into urban development and its affect on our natural environments, it had these handy “flipcard” style pictorials:
The first picture shows the “typical” or “traditional” method of managing waterways during development and explains the danger. Then when you flip the photo over you see the more progressive, eco-friendly method and can read about that. I only got to flip two of them before the kids called me downstairs though…
Once you descend to the next level (you enter on the third floor and descend to the first) you are literally under the river.
A wall of windows onto the river allow you to observe the fish and other aquatic life in their natural habitat
Kids will love challenging each other to be the first to see a fish move out of the murk or see the surface walk of a water beetle from below.
The tanks all feature some information about the individual species, whom are arranged roughly in the vertical order they would be in the river. Despite their vertical layout, all tanks are easily accessible to kids because of the cool grotto-like steps and hidey-holes they’ve built them on
But my daughter was absolutely enthralled with this mucousy chap
In case you’re interested, eels feel pretty slimy but smooth if you touch them. And they do bite. But they only have one tooth. It doesn’t really hurt, it feels more like a sucking sensation. Apparently a staff member has been bitten and he lived to tell the tale.
The staff are great and approached the kids several times to talk to them about what they were looking at, without being too pedantic.
Our admission to the Fluvarium was free, thanks to Doors Open Days, and yours could be free for an entire year thanks to our blog! Just follow this link to enter our annual family pass giveaway.