my life in pictures and words

the “national aquarium” and a little more

over memorial day weekend, my sil-s and i drove out to washington, d.c. to meet up with my bro-m to visit our nation’s capital. you can read about our drive to d.c. here.

for our first full day in d.c., my sil-s and i had an adventure driving from one hotel to the next.  and the day was just beginning.

at 10:30 a.m.

around 12:30 p.m. we finally set out on our adventures for the day.

on the way to our first destination we saw this hotel, the willard intercontinental. i read a plaque that said that president lincoln stayed there a few nights before his inaguration. pretty crazy!

after taking a few pictures of the hotel’s exterior we walked across the street only to find this little gem to the left of us. for those of you who can’t tell, it’s the capital.

once we finally reached our first destination, the national aquarium (or so we thought), we got right into checking out what was there.

our first sight was this beautiful jellyfish tank.

then we walked around and looked at some fish.
the top left is the spotfin butterflyfish.  this fish fools its predators by the dark spot on its dorsal fin and the black stripe through its eye.
the top right are piranhas.  it’s so crazy how they just line up with each other and then just stay still.
the bottom left is called chambered nautilus.  this mollusk has over 90 suckerless tentacles.
the bottom right is blue tang fish. i love watching this fish swim because of its pretty colors. and because it always reminds me of dory.

we got to the aquarium just before the alligator feeding so we lined up a few minutes prior.  to the right of us was this snake who was shedding its skin.  i don’t think i’ve ever seen a snake’s skin like this so it was pretty interesting.

here are a few shots of the american alligator before their feeding.

and here is one being fed.  it was pretty fun watching them get fed.  they’re so aggressive!

while i don’t like frogs much, seeing them behind glass isn’t so bad.
the top left is the dyeing poison dart frog. and the bottom right is the blue poison dart frog. i’m not sure what the other two are named.

these are salamanders and a newt. i think that newt is pregnant. haha.

cute little turtles and a huge snapping turtle.

we also saw some seahorses.  can you spot them?

i once made a sea urchin when i was in elementary school.  it was made with a foam ball and toothpicks and i painted it purple.  in case you couldn’t tell, that is what is in the top left shot, a sea urchin. in the bottom left is a sea anemone. isn’t it so pretty? and on the right…ummm..i’m not sure what that is but it’s pretty too.

i really enjoyed walking through the aquarium even though it was pretty small. well small in comparison to other aquariums i’ve been to. however, i do have to say that about 85% of the animals i saw here i’d never seen before. which is refreshing because most of the time it’s the same fish (and other animals) at the different aquariums.

after we were finished there we walked to the smithsonian institution museum of natural history.

we looked through the ocean hall.

and we walked through many other exhibits but didn’t take any pictures.  =(

one of the exhibits that we really enjoyed looking through is the written in bone. it is about forensic anthropology. if you’re in washington, d.c. anytime before january 6, 2014 you should check it out. and especially if you like watching the show bones.

before leaving, my sil-s and i took this shot on the third level.
(photo by sil-s)

and this is what we saw when we looked down into the rotunda. haha!

just in case you couldn’t see the seahorses, i’ve put a little seahorse sticker next to the actual seahorse. can you see them now?

after we walked back to the second hotel, the hilton north of dupont circle, we met up with bro-m to get some snacks in their “hilton honors only” clubhouse. then we went to sit in our room just waiting for our next adventure to start! (which you’ll read about soon!)

and funny story about why the post title is in quotations is because when we were sitting in the clubhouse eating our snacks, bro-m brought to our attention that the actual national aquarium is in baltimore, md. which is why the one we went to was so small. it’s just an extension located in d.c. =( but it was still nice to see and actually worked out that it was so small since we only had a limited amount of time for viewing. hopefully one day i’ll get to see the actual national aquarium which is located in the harbor. ooouuu..can’t wait to see that!

edited with photogrid and instagram

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