Before we get too far into this exciting new year, we'd like to first take a moment to thank our amazing online community for their support and love in 2013!
Together, we were able to accomplish some pretty amazing things this past year and we're excited to see just what 2014 has in store for us.
Here's what some our experts are looking forward to in the New Year:
Jenn Dittmar, Manager of National Aquarium Animal Rescue
I'm looking forward to continuing to rehab our current cold-stun patients and coordinating their releases later this year.
I'm also looking forward to hosting the annual dolphin count and coordinating exciting upgrades to our seal rehabilitation facility!
Laura Bankey, Director of Conservation
I’m really looking forward to a busy field season in 2014. We have projects scheduled from New York to Virginia and I always look forward to winter ending so we can start restoring habitats again.
This year, I’m also excited about the opportunity to host the National Wildlife Federation and our other state affiliate partners for NWF's Annual Meeting. Conservation partners from across the country will be joining us in Baltimore in May and I can’t wait to show off our wonderful Aquarium and our local field projects!
Jack Cover, General Curator
In 2014, I’m looking forward to finding new ways to use our exhibits and animals to raise awareness of the diversity of life that can be found in a healthy beach ecosystem.
Every shell found on a beach has a story to tell and I hope to share many of these stories with you all in the New Year!
Sarah Elfreth, Government Affairs
I'm thankful for the Aquarium community’s support in helping Maryland become the first state on the East Coast to ban the possession, sale, and trade of shark fins.
I'm excited to work on other policy issues aimed at protecting aquatic life in 2014!
Holly Bourbon, Curator of Fishes
My team will be focused on so many exciting things in the New Year. Chief among them are our brand-new exhibit, Blacktip Reef, and the settling of animals from our closed Washington, DC venue into their new homes here in Baltimore.
One animal from DC, a loggerhead named Brownie, is particularly exciting for us. Brownie is part of the Loggerhead Head Start program, which gives sea turtle hatchlings a head start at a great life . In 2014, I hope to see him reach a releasable size!
Leigh Clayton, Director of Animal Health
2014 is already shaping up to be a very busy and exciting year for me.
In just a few short weeks, I’m be in Orlando, Florida lecturing at the North American Veterinary Conference, one of the largest vet conferences in the US. My lectures will mostly focus on reptiles, covering everything from insectivore nutrition to oral disease.
I'm looking forward to seeing a paper written by one of our prior interns, Dr. Kathy Tuxbur, published in the Diseases of Aquatic Organisms journal. A lot of Kathy's work with us as an intern focused on horseshoe crabs and the carapace lesions and branchitis that can sometimes present in the species.
Lastly, I’m looking forward to seeing our newest baby sloth, Scout, continue to grow and mature!
Heather Doggett, Director of Visitor Programs and Staff Training
I am excited to spend more time with my family outdoors, enjoying nature and doing some new citizen science activities with my four-year-old.
I’m hoping to take more hikes in 2014 and record what we find!
What are you looking forward to this year? Tell us in the comments section!