ANIMAL A-Z…


Learn more about our amazing animal collection. Click on a letter below to find an animal or use our animal search:

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Tang, Clown (Acanthurus lineatus)

Tang, Clown
Tang, Clown
The clown tang is also known as the striped surgeonfish and can be easily identified by its colouration. Its upper body is covered in blue and yellow stripes, with a black edge. The lower part of its body is pale blue or purple. It reaches about 38cm in length and may have different colour patterns, depending on where in the world it is found.
Fun Facts... Large male clown tang controls harems of females and has a well-defind feeding territory. They are always in motion and have a venomous caudal spine, which can cause a painful wound. 

Location... Found in the Indo-Pacific, from east Africa, to the Great Barrier Reef.

Habitat... Inhabits exposed seaward reefs and adults are usually found in schools. Juveniles are solitary and are usually found on shallow rubble habitats. 

Diet...
Mainly herbivorous, but also feeds on crustaceans

Least Concern

Tang, Lipstick (Naso lituratus)

Tang, Lipstick
Tang, Lipstick

This species can be easily recognised by two bright orange forward hooked spines on the base of the tail, its orange lips (where this species gets its name from) and black face mask.

Juveniles are grey and take on a more reddish tone as they mature. A black mask develops between the eyes and mouth and the 'lips' are highlighted by orange as they mature. Adult males often grow long streaming filaments off their tail. 

Juveniles tend to group together, while mature individuals are solitary. 

This species can grow to a maximum length of approximately 45 cm. 


Fun Facts...

They have the ability to quickly and dramatically change colour, depending on mood or environment. When excited or hiding in the reef their body can become almost black with grey patches. 



Location...

Widespread throughout western and central Pacific. 



Habitat...

They are found above coral rocks and rubble in coastal and inner reef flats and reef slopes. 



Diet...
Primarily a herbivore eating mainly leafy brown algae

Least Concern

Tang, Pacific sailfin (Zebrasoma veliferum)

Tang, Pacific sailfin
Tang, Pacific sailfin

This fish has an unusual ovoid shape and can be a variation of colours, ranging from dark brown to light grey. The adult's body is usually dark in colour and has vertical yellow lines and six diagonal, narrow bands. The head is usually paler and the fins are dark with pale blue or green borders.

Juveniles are usually mistaken for angelfish as they have the same oversized dorsal fins but they are bright yellow with narrow black or grey bars. As they age, the bright yellow colour of the body fades.


Fun Facts...

Tangs and other ray-finned fishes use visual displays, such as colour changes and chemical signals to communicate with each other and other species of fish.



Location...

Widespread in the Pacific region and found in the east Indian Ocean from the Christmas Island eastward to Hawaii, then north to Japan and south to New South Wales.



Habitat...

Found usually on tropical coral reefs, from shallow protected areas to outer reef habitats, reaching depths of 40m.



Diet...
Feeds on algae and zooplankton

Least Concern

Tang, Powder blue (Acanthurus leucosternon)

Tang, Powder blue
Tang, Powder blue

The powder blue tang is a light blue fish, with bold yellow and white fins, which grows to an average length of 19cm.


Fun Facts... Powder blue tangs are a monogamous fish species, which means they will stay with the same mate for life. 

Location...

Found in the Indian Ocean, from eastern Africa to the Andaman Sea and southwest Indonesia to Christmas Island, with its range extending to Bali and Indonesia in the western Pacific.



Habitat...

Usually found in shallow waters around coastal or island coral reefs.



Diet...
Feeds on algae.

Least Concern

Tang, Regal (Paracanthurus hepatus)

Tang, Regal
Tang, Regal

Regal tangs, also know as the common surgeonfish, are vibrant sky blue in colouration and have distinct oval-shaped bodies. Adult fish have dark narrow lines on the dorsal half of their body and a lighter, circular patch directly behind the pectoral fin. The pectoral and caudal fins are bright yellow. Juveniles start off bright yellow, with blue spots and their fins are blue. This colouration changes as they mature. They grow up to 38cm in length.


Fun Facts...

This fish have a toxic, razor-sharp caudal spine which they use to attack predators and are also used when males are fighting over a female.



Location...

Found in the Indian and Pacific oceans.



Habitat...

Inhabit tropical and sub-tropical coastal regions, hiding amongst coral reefs.



Diet...
Herbivores, feeding on algae which they pull from rocks and coral.

Not Evaluated

Tang, Unicorn (Naso unicornis)

Tang, Unicorn
Tang, Unicorn

The unicorn tang is greenish-grey in colour and can grow to a maximum length of 70cm, although more commonly reaches lengths of around 50cm. The adults can be recognised by a bony horn projecting from in front of the eyes. 


Fun Facts... The unicorn tang is so named because of the horny projection coming from between its eyes. 

Location...

Found in the Indo-Pacific, from the Red Sea and East Africa to the Hawaiian, Marquesas and Tuamoto Islands. It is found as far north as Southern Japan and as far south as Lord Howe and Rapa islands.



Habitat...

The unicorn tang is regularly seen in inshore coral reefs, as well as channels, moats and lagoons. Juveniles are usually found in shallow protected bays and harbours.



Diet...
Feeds on coarse, leafy brown algae.

Least Concern

Tang, Yellow (Zebrasoma flavescens)

Tang, Yellow
Tang, Yellow

Yellow tangs are iridescent yellow with a snout-like mouth and can grow to a maximum of 20cm.

This species is active during the day where it can be found feeding in aggregations numbering several hundred, though will often find a solitary place to hide during the night.


Fun Facts...

Yellow tang is a long-lived species; the oldest wild yellow tang collected was 41 years old!



Location...

Indian Ocean and there is a large population around Hawaii.



Habitat...

Tropical inshore coral reefs, protected bays and lagoons.



Diet...
Varieties of seaweed

Least Concern

Tarantula, Green bottle blue (Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens)

Tarantula, Green bottle blue
Tarantula, Green bottle blue
The green bottle blue tarantula can be easily identified by its dramatic colouring. Adults have metallic blue legs, a blue-green carapace and a vibrant orange abdomen. Spiderlings are also quite colourful and their colours brighten as they grow, with every moult. Their leg span can reach about 15cm.
Fun Facts... Like many other tarantulas, this species has fine hairs on its abdomen which it can flick at predators. These hairs can cause severe irritation, especially if they enter the eyes. 

Location... Found in northern Venezuela in South America.

Habitat... These spiders are terrestrial burrowers, meaning they form burrows in scrubland and desert edges. 

Diet...
Feeds on small invertebrates.

Not Evaluated

Terrapin, Yellow-bellied (Trachemys scripta scripta)

Terrapin, Yellow-bellied
Terrapin, Yellow-bellied
The yellow-bellied terrapin, also known as the yellow-bellied slider, can be identified by its distinctive markings. It has yellow stripes on its head, neck and limbs and a yellow-red spot on either side of its head. The carapace is oval shaped and is olive-brown in colour, with yellow bars. Its underside (plastron) is yellow, with dark blotches. Females are larger than the males and their carapaces can grow to about 29cm in length. 
Fun Facts... This terrapin can live up to 30 years old. Females produce up to three clutches of eggs per year, containing between 5 - 20 eggs. Females travel over a kilometre from the water to find a suitable place to nest. 

Location... These terrapins are native to eastern and central North America. However, they have been introduced to parts of Europe, Africa and Asia and are considered an invasive species. 

Habitat... Inhabit a wide range of freshwater habitats, including rivers, swamps, lakes and ponds, usually in shallow, slow-flowing water. 

Diet...
Juveniles are carnivorous, whereas adults feed mainly on aquatic plants.

Least Concern

Tetra, Cardinal (Paracheirodon axelrodi)

Tetra, Cardinal
Native to the upper Orinoco and Negro rivers of South America.
Fun Facts...

Location...

Habitat...

Diet...


Not Evaluated

Tetra, Congo (Phenacogrammus interruptus)

Tetra, Congo
Tetra, Congo

The Congo Tetra is covered by relatively large scales and has a copper/brown body with blue/green irridescent reflections

Females and males are easy to differentiate. Adult males have long ray extensions to their tail dorsal and anal fins and are both larger and more brightly coloured than the females.

After an energetic courting the female will scatter about 300 eggs, sometimes more, which sink to the bottom. The eggs then hatch after around 6 days. 


Fun Facts... The Congo Tetra is sometimes known as the 'jewel of the tetras' by fish-keepers due to their iridescent colours and peaceful nature. 

Location...

Africa: Middle Congo basin.



Habitat...

Freshwater 



Diet...
Feeds on worms, small insects, crustaceans and plant matter.

Least Concern

Tetra, False penguin (Thayerta boehlkei)

Tetra, False penguin
Found in the Amazon basin
Fun Facts...

Location...

Habitat...

Diet...


Not Evaluated

Tetra, Neon (Paracheirodon innesi)

Tetra, Neon
Tetra, Neon
Neon tetras have a light blue back over a silver abdomen. They are characterised by a iridescent blue horizontal stripe, running from the head down the back and a neon red stripe from the middle of the body to the tail. At night, they can subdue these colours, making them appear almost black as the fish rests. The colours become bright again when the fish becomes active in the morning. They reach about 3cm in length.
Fun Facts... Females lay a batch of eggs which hatch in as little as 24 hours! Tetras 'turn off' their bright colours at night so they can't be as easily seen by predators.

Location... These fish are found in the stream tributaries of the Solimões River in South America.

Habitat... Inhabits blackwater or clear water in stream and tributaries.

Diet...
Worms, small insects, crustaceans and plant matter

Not Evaluated

Triggerfish, Clown (Balistoides conspicillum)

Triggerfish, Clown
Triggerfish, Clown

The clown triggerfish gets its name from its unique colouration. It has bright orange-yellow lips, half of its body is black with large white spots and the other half is mostly black with splotches of black outlined in yellow. Its tail is white and black and it has a pale strip just below the eyes. Juveniles are lighter in colour and darken as they mature. It reaches lengths of about 50cm.


Fun Facts...

When threatened, this fish darts into a small hole in the coral, extends the spines on its belly and head and bites into the coral, making it extremely difficult for predators to pull it out!



Location...

Found in the Indo-Pacific from east Africa, south to South Africa, then east through Indonesia to Samoa, north to southern Japan and south to New Caledonia.



Habitat...

Inhabits clear coastal, to outer reef habitats, often see near deep drop-offs.



Diet...
Carnivorous, feeding on sea urchins, crustaceans and molluscs.

Not Evaluated

Triggerfish, Indian (Melichthys indicus)

Triggerfish, Indian
Triggerfish, Indian

This species has a brown body and black fins with white lines at the base of the dorsal and anal fins. They can grow up to 25cm. 

Indian Triggerfish dig their shelters under solid objects by swimming sand away. This is done by putting their mouth against a solid object and swimming like crazy, thereby creating a current that takes the sand away and making a little nest area. 

 


Fun Facts... If they feel threatended the Indian triggerfish will use its spine to wedge itself into a hole or crevice. 

Location...

Indian Ocean: Red Sea and East Africa eastward to western Thailand and Sumatra, Indonesia 



Habitat...

Inhabits coral-rich seaward reef slopes.



Diet...
Feeds on sponges, algae, crustaceans and small invertebrates

Not Evaluated

Triggerfish, Picasso (Rhinecanthus aculeatus)

Triggerfish, Picasso
Triggerfish, Picasso

The Picasso triggerfish is easily identified by its angular body, fin arrangement and colour pattern. It is the colour pattern which gives it its name as it displays blocks of colours, like a Picasso painting. Its is predominantly yellowish with bright blue, yellow, black, white and orange lines. It reaches a maxiumum length of 30cm and has a powerful jaw, equipped with sharp teeth. Its eyes are set on top of its head and can move independently to survey the scene for predators.


Fun Facts...

Picasso triggerfish can make grunting sounds to warn other fish of predators and can make a whirring sound when startled!



Location...

Found in the Indo-Pacific region, including the Hawaiian islands, Australia, Phillipines, South Africa and the Red Sea.



Habitat...

Inhabits shallow outer reef habitats, protected lagoons and subtidal reefs.



Diet...
Feeds on invertebrates and algae. Also crustaceans, sea urchins, worms, snails and brittlestars.

Not Evaluated

Turbot (Scophthalmus maximus)

Turbot
Turbot

Almost circular in shape, the turbot is a flatfish with a large mouth and sharp teeth. Its eyes are on the left side of its head and have numerous bony tubercules on the upper side. Its is a master of camouflage and is sandy brown to dark brown in colour with blotches and spots helping it blend in perfectly with the sandy bottom of the sea. Its underside is white and it can grow to a length of 40cm.


Fun Facts...

Turbot's camouflage is so good that hardly any small turbot are caught by anglers. They can even change colour to blend in perfectly with whatever sea bottom they are dwelling on.



Location...

Found in the northeast Atlantic, thoroughout the Mediterranean and along the European coasts to the Arctic Circle. Also found in the Baltic Sea.



Habitat...

Adults inhabit sandy, rocky or mixed bottoms and are common in brackish waters



Diet...
Feeds on other fish such as sand eels. Also eats squid, prawns and molluscs.

Not Evaluated

Turtle, Geoffroy's side-necked (Phrynops geoffroanus)

Turtle, Geoffroy's side-necked
Also known as Geoffroy's toadhead turtle and Cotinga River Toadhead Turtle. They are related to the giant tortoise and the black marsh turtle. The Geoffroy's side-necked turtle is usually a solitary creature but occassionally they have been observed in groups at favoured basking sites. Females may travel hundreds of meters to lay their eggs away from the water amongst creeping vegetation. Females can lay eggs at least 4 times in any reproductive season and each clutch can be up to 30 eggs.
Fun Facts...
Their upper shell is called a carapace. Hatchlings are only 4cm long and will weigh less than 10 grams. They are called the side neck turtle because they withdraw their heads sideways when protecting themselves from their predators. 


Location... The Geoffroy's side-necked turtle comes from South America and is found in Venezuela, Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Argentina and Guyana.

Habitat... They are found in fresh water in rivers, lakes and streams within tropical rainforests.

Diet...
Fish, snails, small mammals and aquatic plants

Least Concern

Turtle, Map (Graptemys sp.)

Turtle, Map
Turtle, Map

Map turtles are a type of freshwater turtle found in the rivers of the United States and Southern Canada and are easily recognised from other types of turtle by a distinctive ridge which runs down the center of their shell. Currently, thirteen different species of map turtle are known. 


Fun Facts...

Map turtles get their name for the map-like markings found on their shell



Location...

Found throughout the rivers of the United States and Southern Canada



Habitat...

Diet...
Map turtles are omnivores and will eat a large amount of aquatic invertebrates, plants and animals such as snails and crayfish

Not Evaluated

Turtle, Snake-necked (Chelodina longicollis)

Turtle, Snake-necked
Turtle, Snake-necked

The snake-necked turtle is a medium sized turtle, which has an average length of 25cm. The most distinctive feature of this turtle is its very long neck. As its neck is so long, the snake-necked turtle will pull its head sideways into its shell, rather than straight back. 


Fun Facts...

The female snake-necked turtles are bigger than the males



Location...

The snake-necked turtle is from south-eastern Australia, and can be found in swamps, wetlands, rivers and streams from eastern Queensland to the south-western border of New South Wales. 



Habitat...

The snake-necked turtle is semi-aquatic, meaning that they spend most of their time living in freshwater, such as swamps, wetlands, streams and rivers, but will also occasionally leave the water to bask in the sun. When in water, snake-necked turtles are primarily bottom-dwelling animals



Diet...
Prey includes small fish, snails, tadpoles and plankton.

Not Evaluated
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SPOOKY SPECTACULAR AT SEAQUARIUM!

SeaQuarium Weston is inviting guests to be part of it’s Spooky Spectacular event once again this half term, and this time it promises... [MORE]

FREE Activity Booklet!

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Pick up a booklet, find the answers to the questions around SeaQuarium and play some fun games along the way! Children will even receive a sticker at the end of their visit when shown to a member of staff!

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