Cue the “Jaws” music. The Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay has two new sharks swimming around the 1.3-million-gallon Shipwreck exhibit. Meet the two new scalloped hammerheads, former Hawaiians retrieved from “a sustainable and healthy population” there.
The Shark Reef Aquarium became one of three aquariums in the United States that house the scalloped hammerheads, one of two varieties of this type of shark lurking in the depths there. The aquarium says that “other populations of scalloped hammerheads were listed as an endangered species in 2014.”
These bad boys can grow up to 14-feet long and weigh in at 300 pounds.
They aren’t the only hammerheads swimming among the 2,000 animals at the aquarium. Smaller bonnethead sharks also call this place home. In fact, 16 shark varieties, numbering 100 in all, prey within the aquarium, which features two 360-degree plexiglass tunnels for getting very close to these beasts.
Get to know the other 100 species, including golden crocodiles, piranhas, Komodo dragons, motoro stingrays, nurse and zebra sharks, jellyfish and octopus. Fourteen exhibits such as a touch pool, where guests can feed stingrays and horseshoe crabs, get guests right in the action. Other experiences let you feed the sharks or 300-pound sea turtles.
Tickets are $18 for adults and $12 for children ages 5 to 12.
Info: Shark Reef Aquarium, (702) 632-4555