A Home for Baltimore's Wildlife

The Aquarium’s Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Waterfront Park is a certified wildlife habitat right here in the heart of Baltimore City and is home to a myriad of native species, including the White-Throated Sparrow, Peregrine Falcon, Monarch Butterfly, Praying Mantis, House Finch, Honeybee and many more!

Published August 06, 2015


Senior horticulturist, Josh Leisenring, is in charge of maintaining this outdoor exhibit, ensuring that everything from marsh grasses to conifers continually thrives.

As a kid, Josh loved to replicate natural habitats and spent time building his own terrariums and aquariums—an interest that eventually led to his career in horticulture. Over the years, he’s been able to turn his experience with field biology, animal husbandry and horticulture into a unique position here at the National Aquarium.

Right now, Josh is busy planting new salt marsh grasses, removing unwanted species and preparing at least one exhibit for a new water feature that will replicate a herbaceous wetland habitat. When he’s not busy caring for the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Waterfront Park, Josh also tends to the Aquarium’s greenroof. He’s currently transforming the space into a meadow of Maryland native perennial grasses and wildflowers—an ideal space for native wildlife to pass through the Inner Harbor.

Our citizen scientists have been out exploring, identifying and documenting some of the wildlife found in these urban green spaces. The crowd-sourced observations help researchers and scientists gather information about everything from butterfly migration to oyster populations.

They are also tracking seasonal changes in the plants in our Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Waterfront Park, with the help of Project BudBurst, bringing national scale climate change research and conservation efforts to our own back yard.

Want to join the ranks of citizen scientists? Join Project BudBurst and document the nature in your own backyard! 

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