The Gulfarium's Research and Conservation Mission Statement is to significantly contribute to and participate in scientific research and conservation projects that are important to the preservation of marine life in the wild as well as the advancement of husbandry for animals in zoological parks and aquariums while sharing and fostering this passion in our visitors and the general public. Click here to see how we work towards that goal everyday. 

What can you do?

Gulfarium staff members are asked every day what people can do to help marine animals and the environment we share. Luckily, there are a few simple changes we can all easily make in our homes that can help to protect endangered species and conserve our natural world!  

Dispose of trash properly and recycle! Recycle and reuse items whenever you can! Recyclable items include plastics, paper, cardboard boxes, glass bottles, newspapers and books, computers and cellphones, ink cartridges, batteries… the possibilities are endless! For more information on what types of items can be recycled and how, look here. Want to start recycling but there are no programs available in your community? Look here to find the closest recycling center in your zip code. We can all do our part to ensure that trash articles do not end up in our waterways and our oceans!
Shop with reusable bags!  According to One World One Ocean, approximately 54% of the 120 marine mammal species that are on the threatened list have been seen either ingesting or entangled in plastic. When plastic bags are floating in the ocean, they can look like a jellyfish, which is a favorite food for a variety of sea turtles. We can easily reduce the amount of plastic in our oceans by eliminating our use of plastic shopping bags. Reusable bags are found in many local grocery stores, but our favorite reusable totes can be found here at Peppermint Narwhal.  Click here to take the Better Bag Challenge and stop using plastic bags this year!
Choose sustainable seafood! According to Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch, scientists estimate that two-thirds of assessed fish populations are in poor health, and that 90% of commercial fisheries are either exploited or collapsed. To find out more about wild seafood issues, see here.  To discover how you can make sustainable seafood choices, check out Seafood Watch and download a fishing guide for your home state. There is even a Seafood Watch app you can download from your phone’s app store!  Recipe ideas for sustainable seafood dinners can be found here. Seafood Watch has also begun partnering with certain restaurants to provide sustainable options. Who knew that protecting our environment could be so delicious?
Use environmentally-friendly pesticides! Run-off from pesticides finds its way into our waterways and pollutes our streams, rivers, and oceans. This affects all members of the marine food chain, from the tiny plankton to dolphins and whales. For more information on what types of chemicals are harmful to some fish species, see here. For more information on alternatives to dangerous pesticides and hints for a healthy garden and lawn, see here
Help in your community! In addition to the above ideas, participating in roadside or beach clean-ups is a great way to become more involved in caring for your community. Conservation starts at home! Look to your town’s chamber website to find out more information about organized events.

Want to know how you can help protect your favorite animal species? Click the links below to discover even more you can do to help marine life!

Atlantic bottlenose dolphin
California sea lion
Harbor seal
Asian small-clawed otter
African penguin
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