Advisory: The National Aquarium is a private nonprofit organization and remains open during the federal government shutdown.

Animal Update - September 27

Published September 27, 2013

Between our Baltimore and Washington, DC, venues, more than 17,500 animals representing 900 species call the National Aquarium home. There are constant changes, additions, and more going on behind the scenes that our guests may not notice during their visit. We want to share these fun updates with our community so we're bringing them to you in our weekly Animal Update posts!

Check our blog every Friday to find out what's going on... here's what's new this week!

animal update

Bi-color parrotfish in Blacktip Reef

Did you know? Bi-color parrotfish sleep in bubbles of slime. Before finding their sleeping spot within the reef for the night, the parrotfish spins a cocoon around its body. The slimy bubble protects the parrotfish from nighttime predators by hiding its scent! national aquarium bicolor parrotfish Parrotfish get their name from their beak-like teeth and bright coloration. They use their "beaks" to eat the algae that grows on and around coral. When the coral rock has travel through the parrotfish's digestive system (which extracts the needed nutrients from the algae), it comes out as sand! A large bi-color parrotfish can produce up to 2,200 pounds of sand per year! This species is found throughout the warm waters of the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

Be sure to check back every Friday to find out what’s happening!

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