Aquarium/Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit

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Yellow Angelfish inside the Coral Reef Exhibit
School kids seining in the Indian River Lagoon
Magnifying glass look at a peppermint shrimp
Guests on a tour of the St Lucie County Aquarium in front of the main coral reef exhbiti
Hand in the touch tank holding a horseshoe crab

About the Aquarium

The Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit at the St. Lucie County Aquarium is dedicated to educating the general public and school groups about the critical need to preserve the diversity and complexity of Florida’s marine environments.


At the Aquarium, visitors can explore living models of six different Florida marine and estuarine ecosystems while learning about the importance and intricacy of these ecosystems. The largest display is a spectacular living model of a Caribbean coral reef ecosystem. Other displays include seagrass, mangrove, lagoon hardbottom, and nearshore reef habitats, as well as a deepwater Oculina coral reef. There are several smaller aquarium displays and microscope displays where visitors can get a glimpse of the microscopic world. A touch tank also allows visitors an up-close encounter with local marine life.

Created and managed through a partnership between the St. Lucie County Board of County Commissioners and the Smithsonian Marine Station in Fort Pierce, this 5,000-square-foot facility features more than 8,000 gallons of marine life. The Aquarium's six aquarium displays and touch tank accurately reflect the habitats typically found in the Indian River Lagoon and surrounding coastal waters.

The St. Lucie County Aquarium, featuring the Smithsonian Marine Ecosystems Exhibit, opened in November of 2000, after the center's main 3,000-gallon coral reef exhibit was being retired from the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. Smithsonian scientists were the first to put a living model of an Atlantic coral reef ecosystem on display for the public.

The St. Lucie County Aquarium is located at 420 Seaway Drive, Fort Pierce, Fla. 34949
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