We love a good adventure here at the Aquarium, so we created our own egg hunt… with a twist! Search through our exhibits for large white eggs, then scan the QR code in that exhibit to learn more about our egg-laying animals. From birds to amphibians to reptiles and more, these EGGsellent facts are sure to teach you something new!
Find all seven eggs throughout the Aquarium, then return to the Information Desk for a prize!
1. Bald Eagle
Bald eagles lay eggs in large nests they spend years creating! These nests can reach 10 feet deep and 8 feet wide and weigh as much as a pickup truck. Once per year, female bald eagles will lay one to three eggs in the nest and care for them until they hatch seven weeks later.
2. Lesser Siren
Sirens are part of a unique group of semi-aquatic animals called amphibians. Amphibians typically lay jelly-like eggs in the water… sometimes hundreds at a time! The young sirens that hatch look much different than those you see here at the Aquarium, but through a process called metamorphosis, they will go through many life stages and eventually turn into the adult sirens you’re familiar with.
3. American Alligator
The American alligator is an iconic reptile in the Lowcountry. All reptiles lay eggs, and alligators typically lay 25 at a time! The eggs have a leathery shell, much different than bird eggs you may have seen before. Nests are close to the water, and babies stay with their mothers for a few years before living the majority of their lives alone.
4. Chain Dogfish
Some shark species, like the chain dogfish you see in our Touch Tank, lay eggs externally in small cases along reef structures. Chain dogfish lay two eggs every two to three weeks by swimming around a reef and catching the egg’s long, string-like tendril on an object, winding it in place.
5. Common Octopus
The common octopus has an average life expectancy of two years. In the final stage of life, called senescence, the female octopus will lay her one and only clutch of eggs and begin to care for them. Shortly after the eggs hatch, the adult octopus life ends and the hatchlings begin the lifecycle again.
6. Sea Turtle
While sea turtles spend all of their lives in the water, every two to three years, the females will crawl on the beach to dig a nest and lay dozens of eggs. They are one of the few reptiles who have temperature-dependent sex determination, meaning. warmer eggs grow female sea turtles and cooler eggs grow male sea turtles!
7. Cownose Ray
Cownose rays have a very unique egg-laying process called ovoviviparity. This means the egg develops and hatches internally, and the adult ray then gives birth to a live pup! Other ovoviviparous animals include certain species of frogs, flies, snakes and worms.
Did you find all seven eggs?
Congratulations! See the info desk attendant for your prize. At the Aquarium we are committed to the highest standards of animal care and cannot lead the way without the support of you! As a nonprofit, we rely on your support to ensure that the animals are well cared for and that their conservation is prioritized in the wild places that they live. Thank you for visiting today and supporting our mission!