Take part in this special day’s happenings dedicated to raising awareness for all marine and oceanic animals, and enjoy family-friendly activities, caretaker chats and more.
Join the OKC Zoo in causing a commotion for the ocean! June is World Oceans Month and to celebrate, the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is inviting guests to partake in the festivities for World Oceans Day on Thursday, June 8. Presented locally by Bob Moore Subaru, this World Oceans Day celebration will be held around the Zoo’s Stingray Bay habitat from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Guests will have the opportunity to learn about the oceanic species here at the Zoo and how all animals are affected by the health of our oceans, participate in family-friendly activities, caretaker chats, event-themed photo opportunities hosted by Bob Moore Subaru and more. All event activities are free with regular Zoo admission. Guests who can’t attend World Oceans Day in person are encouraged to tune in to Facebook for two special live chats at 9:30 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. with our expert caretakers.
The OKC Zoo is home to a group, or “fever”, of 24 stingrays at the Stingray Bay habitat including cownose, bat eagle and Atlantic stingrays. Sharing the habitat are bamboo sharks, a small species of reef shark. Of the three species of stingrays that call the OKC Zoo home, the Atlantic and bat eagle rays are considered least concern while the cownose ray is near threatened according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The OKC Zoo is proud to participate in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) SAFE: Saving Animal From Extinction program for sharks and rays and is committed to the care and conservation of these incredible species. AZA: SAFE programs aim to harness the collective expertise, resources, and reach of AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums to save species and promote wildlife and habitat protection. In addition to participating in the SAFE program, the OKC Zoo is dedicated to the protection of all oceanic animals through a number of conservation programs. Most notably, the Zoo has partnered with Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch® program to promote sustainable seafood purchasing and consumption. Zoo experts will be available during the World Oceans Day event to answer questions about sustainable seafood and how Oklahomans can join and benefit. Seafood Watch, a program started in 1999 by the Monterey Bay Aquarium, helps consumers and businesses make choices for healthy oceans. The OKC Zoo joins them as a Conservation Partner institution in their effort to protect and advocate for the Ocean’s ecosystem. By choosing sustainable seafood and learning more about the Seafood Watch program, you can have a direct positive impact on 70% of the planet!
OKC Zoo World Oceans Day Facts
- MYTH: Goldfish have a 3-second memory. FACT: Scientists have proven goldfish remember for up to 6 months.
- The ocean covers 70% of the Earth, 80% of the ocean is yet to be explored.
- More than 70% of all volcanic eruptions occur in the ocean.
- Fish are incredibly smart. Elasmobranchs (sharks and rays) have some cognitive abilities that are similar to those of 4-year-old humans.
- The average American uses 140-170 gallons of water per day.
- 73% of deep-water fish have been found with microplastics in their system.
- Ocean acidity has increased by 30% over the last 200 years.
- 7.8% of the oceans are designated as Marine Protected Areas. OKC Zoo supports the 30x30 goal to protect 30% of Earth’s land and waters by 2030.
- Wild, sustainable seafood has a lower carbon footprint than beef, mutton, cheese, pork and poultry.
- Less than 2% of the Earth’s water is freshwater.
- A leaky faucet can waste 100 gallons of water per day.
As a leader in animal care and wellbeing, the Oklahoma City Zoo, has announced plans for its next expansion project, a new marine mammal habitat that will be home to the Zoo’s California sea lions, harbor seals and potentially other species. This new habitat expansion will be located in the eastern section of the park overlooking Zoo Lake and encompass 3.5 acres including existing sites for the Zoo’s Noble Aquatic Center, which has been closed to guests since 2017, and Pollinator Garden. With the Pollinator Garden being repurposed for this project, the Zoo is establishing additional pollinator gardens throughout its grounds to replenish habitat for native pollinators. Design features of the improved marine mammal habitat include an outdoor amphitheater for educational presentations and caretaker chats, beach areas for the animals, “nose-to-nose” views of the sea lions and seals, an interactive sand area for kids, special event space and much more. Guests will be in awe of an 8-foot-tall underwater viewing window offering opportunities to watch sea lions and seals swim and glide through the water.
Dive into the World Oceans Day fun at the OKC Zoo! The Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily with the last entry at 4 p.m. Purchase advance Zoo admission tickets at okczoo.org/tickets and avoid the entry lines. Located at the crossroads of I-44 and I-35, the OKC Zoo is a proud member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the American Alliance of Museums, Oklahoma City’s Adventure District and an Adventure Road partner. Regular admission is $16 for adults and $13 for children ages 3-11 and seniors ages 65 and over. Children two and under are admitted free. Stay connected with the Zoo on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linktree and TikTok, and by visiting our blog stories. Support your love and passion for wildlife and wild places with a ZOOfriends Membership Passport to the OKC Zoo. There’s a membership level for every kind of explorer with amazing benefits plus, you are supporting the OKC Zoo, its animals, programs and conservation efforts. Memberships can be purchased at okczoo.org/membership.