The aquariums at the National Museum of Play® at The Strong® are home to nearly 150 species of fish and coral. Here are some of them.
False percula clownfish
Scientific name: Amphiprion ocellaris
What tank would be complete without a Nemo? Look closely because false percula clownfish rarely leave the protection of their favorite corals.
Scientific name: Centropyge lorica
In the wild, flame angelfish love to nibble on anemones. That’s why in the museum you will find them only in the Rainbow Reef, a tank that does not contain any anemones.
Scientific name: Paracanthurus hepatus
More affectionately known as Finding Nemo’s Dory, hippo tangs are a favorite of many museum guests.
Scientific name: Naso lituratus
Some people think the lipstick tang looks beautiful; some think it looks plain silly. But one thing is for sure, its unique coloration definitely makes it stand out in a crowd!
Scientific name: Siganus doliatus
Even though the scribbled rabbitfish has a funny name, the name suits it perfectly: The body of the fish looks as if someone has “scribbled” a funny pattern in several colors, and its favorite foods in the aquarium are leafy plants and algae—much like a rabbit!
Scientific name: Naso unicornis
Only male unicorn tangs have a long “horn.” Hercules, the museum’s unicorn tang, is the largest fish in the tank and still getting bigger—and the bigger he gets, the bigger his horn gets!
Scientific name: Zebrasoma flavescens
With a brilliant yellow color rivaled by few other fish, Rainbow Reef’s yellow tangs are always a crowd favorite!
Scientific name: Favia sp.
The green brain coral in Rainbow Reef has to be placed far away from other corals or, in the nighttime, it will send out tentacles called “sweepers” that will sting and kill neighboring corals.
Candy cane coral
Scientific name: Caulastrea curvata
Under certain lighting, candy cane corals display candy-cane-like stripes. In Rainbow Reef you can find these types of coral in blue, green, and brown colorations.
Scientific name: Montipora capricornis
Cap coral is one of the fastest growing corals. It comes in many different colors including red, orange, purple, green, and brown. How many colors can you find in the Rainbow Reef?
Scientific name: Gorgonia sp.
Brown gorgonian corals, sometimes called sea fans, have an almost wood-like skeleton that is very different from most other stony skeleton corals.
Scientific name: Euphyllia paranchora
Hammer corals are closely related to torch corals. Some people have given them the name anchor coral. Look at the coral’s tentacles. Which do you think is a better name, hammer or anchor coral?
Scientific name: Actinodiscus sp.
Mushroom corals are actually closely related to anemones and grow very fast. How many different colors of mushroom corals can you find in Rainbow Reef?
Palau green nepthea leather coral
Scientific name: Nephthea sp.
Palau green nepthea is believed to be extinct in the wild and is only found in tanks like Rainbow Reef. Some scientists believe it is a victim of global warming.
Scientific name: Acropora sp.
Staghorn coral is a favorite of many reef keepers. It can grow in many shapes and sizes and even though it looks like a colored rock, it is actually a living animal.
Scientific name: Euphyllia glabrescens
Torch corals have long, thin tentacles that flutter in the current of the water. Why do you think they are called torches?