Over half term we visited Sea Life Scarborough. Henry loves nature and this was one of his suggestions.
At Sea Life Scarborough, you can obviously see and learn about the creatures in the aquarium, but there is more than that….they undergo rehabilitation work with seals, seabirds and now have a Turtle Rescue experience.
We followed the path round logging our findings in the Dive Log Book as we went. The kids always love these type of activities – bit of pressure on Mummy not to lose the piece of paper and not get them mixed up! Henry loves facts; he loved the displays, factual posters / questions and the interactive nature of many of the different zones.
The new interactive Turtle Rescue experience was a big hit. Here, you take a turtle through the stages the staff do when rescuing a turtle. Establishing the breed of turtle and their associated feeding requirements, weighing the turtle, assessing the medical needs, feeding the turtle correctly until it is rehabilitated to allow reintroduction to the wild. The kids loved this and are still talking about “their” turtles, the breed, what was wrong and what they fed them. Staff were on hand throughout to give them a helping hand and some guidance.
The staff were brilliant, knowledgeable and on hand to answer questions. We attended several of the talks – they were informative and interesting for young and old. Eric and Pumpkin the otters were amazing, so impressive to have one of the oldest Asian short clawed otters in Europe here in Scarborough. The amount they eat is phenomenal! What they eat was certainly interesting and the topic of much discussion on the way home….
Humboldt penguins are awesome, and you can really see their personalities as they interact with each other, the keepers and the public. Do try and waddle with the penguins…. a unique experience where you can get up close and personal. The number of penguins was quite amazing, and we were told they had recently had some eggs laid so there may be some chicks in the future.
The seals were having their pools cleaned (hence the photo), however, it was still very interesting to learn about the story of the residents and the rehabilitation programme. The seal hospital has 3 isolation pens and do such important work up and down the North East coast. The aim is to release them into the wild, but this is not always possible and some have a “home for life” here in Scarborough.
This is the case of the mighty Antiopi, a beautiful loggerhead sea turtle who can be seen in and around the ocean tunnel. She was rescued but wasn’t fit enough to return to the wild to have a chance of survival. The welfare of the animals certainly comes first. How amazing to be able to get so close to a 60 year old turtle, she certainly is a beauty.
Henry’s favourite part was the interactive rock pool, it was so interesting, and the kids asked a lot of questions. The keeper was so patient, taking the time to answer these questions and explain further. Allowing them to touch things, whilst explaining the need to be gentle as this were living organisms. We have had a lot of discussion about star fish eyes and stomachs ever since! The shark egg purses were amazing! I was quite a fan of the weedy sea dragon!
All in all, we thoroughly enjoyed it. We had lunch in the cafe which was nice and reasonably priced. The kids lunch boxes were great: you got a lot of stuff in the box, made up from a good selection of options. Whilst in the cafe, there is currently a Lego Explorers Event (runs until 17th March) which the kids enjoyed and allowed us to have a quiet coffee!
Going in February Half Term (albeit March!) was brilliant as it wasn’t busy, and we could move around easily. The kids (4, 6 and 7 years (we borrowed one for the day)) had a great time and were the right age to enjoy it all, whilst asking questions and interacting with the different zones.
There are a couple of important messages that we learnt from our visit:
Old towels – please take them to Sea Life Scarborough as they form an important part of the seal rescue kit.
Litter – we have heard a lot about plastic in our oceans in recent times and it is up to us to do our bit to minimise and reduce this. Try to avoid the use of plastic, remember that “bag for life”. Take everything with you when you leave the beach. This also goes for the litter thrown out of car windows, PLEASE PLEASE take it home rather than throwing it out of the window, think of the wildlife we love to see….
20th April 2019: Cleaning the North Bay Scarborough, meeting at SEA LIFE Scarborough at 10am.
17th August 2019: Cleaning the North Bay Scarborough, meeting at SEA LIFE Scarborough at 10am.
Each person that participates in the beach clean will receive free entry to SEA LIFE Scarborough following the clean. More details here
Sea Life Scarborough, Scalby Mills Road, YO12 6RP Website
Pay once and visit throughout 2019. More details here
This is an advertorial review and for the purpose of writing this, Sea Life Scarborough provided entry to the centre. I would not advocate something I will not return to pay for. All information was correct at the time of our visit on March 1st 2019.