“Fin and Tonic” at the New England Aquarium

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Last night, I went to “Fin and Tonic” at the New England Aquarium in Boston. I had a great time drinking beer and watching exotic fish swim around.

I did not have my big nerdy dSLR with me so these are all iPhone photos. This wasn’t the kind of event to bring a huge camera, and the pictures turned out alright. A professional was shooting as well, so if you really want to find some great pictures, wait a few days and check google.

Great Ocean Tank

Crowds at the New England Aquarium

We started at the top of the Great Ocean Tank, a giant 200,000 gallon, four-story tall salt-water tank that replicates a Caribbean coral reef. The water is kept at a balmy 80 degrees at all times, a stark contrast to the frigid waters of the north Atlantic in the Boston Harbor.

Sea Turtle at the New England Aquarium

As we were walking away, I heard the trainer say they go through about 36 lbs. of food per day for the few hundred fish that live in this tank.

Other Exhibits at the New England Aquarium

The centerpiece (literally and figuratively) of the aquarium is the Great Ocean Tank, but the other exhibits around it were just as interesting.

We then found eels (I wasn’t taking notes, so I don’t remember their name). Despite how they look in this image, these eels were tiny. Like “thinner than a pencil” tiny.

Eels at the New England Aquarium
and so adorable

Next door to the eels lived tiny seahorses. This was the point where I started taking more pictures because I liked the lighting.

Sea Horses at the New England Aquarium

Friends and Anemones

Next we stumbled upon the anemones. This brightly colored tank was chalk-full of life. At this point, I’d had a drink and I wasn’t reading the signs, so I… don’t know what these are called.

Crustaceans at the New England Aquarium

But they’re big and spiny.

Crustaceans at the New England Aquarium

“Fish are friends, not food”

Most of the exhibits at the New England Aquarium had fish in them. Shocker, I know. Fun fact that I found: one exhibit explained when to use “fish” as a collective plural verses “fishes” as a plural noun. Yes, I’m aware I’m a nerd but I really enjoy when people take the time to explain how to properly use language. Sue me.

Here’s the breakdown: a school of fish is a collective noun because it’s the school (of fish). The same logic goes for a specific breed: “Angler fish are a deep water fish”. It’s not “Angler fishes”. Fishes refers to multiple breeds of fish. So in the gif below, this is a “school of fish”. 

However, I simply referred to every fish I saw as “a fishie” in the same way that every dog is “puppy”.

Some fishies were brightly colored and therefore pretty.

Fishies at the New England Aquarium

Fishies at the New England Aquarium
A mean-muggin’ fishie

Next, I saw a Jelly Fish, or as I called them—Danger fishies.

Jellyfish at the New England Aquarium

Penguins – more than a Batman villian

The last thing that we saw was the penguin enclosure. On fake rocks in the middle of a fake ocean were about 50 penguins. Some played, others bickered amongst themselves. But all of them pooped.

Penguins at the New England Aquarium

They poop rockets.

Penguins at the New England Aquarium

And that was the end. There’s not much of a narrative to this, but it was a fun side trip for the evening.

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