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Outer Reef

Swim Into the depths

Sharks may look ferocious – but you’re more likely to be struck by lightning than attacked by a shark.

Discover the Reef

Shark Feed
It's a Frenzy.
Watch the frenzy – and careful choreography – as our massive sharks get fed! Tues. and Fri. mornings, unscheduled to prevent congestion.
Find it
at the Zoo.
Our 240,000-gallon Outer Reef habitat mimics the real-life edge of a reef, where shallow protected waters meet the open ocean. Find it deep inside the South Pacific Aquarium, to the right of the central grassy lawn.

Meet our sharks

Nurse Shark
Sandbar shark
Blacktip reef shark
Crevalle Jack
Zebra shark

Protecting Sharks

Stop the finning.

THE THREAT: Sharks are beautiful creatures who keep our oceans in balance. But every year, millions fall victim to the horrific practice of finning, where a shark’s fins are cut off for human use and the shark thrown back into the ocean to die.

HOW TO HELP: Tell your friends how awesome sharks are. Never buy shark fin soup, pills or shark souvenirs. Use the Seafood Watch app to support sustainable fishing, and tell your representatives in Congress that you want shark protection laws.

Aquarium Stories

RESTORING THE SOUTH PACIFIC AQUARIUM

After 32 hardworking years, the popular South Pacific Aquarium at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium needs some love. On November 15, the aquarium will close for restoration and repair of critical animal-care structures, habitats and life support systems, to reopen in 2023 with exciting new species, upgraded systems and immersive South Pacific-themed art. “This is … Continued

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One Fish, Two Fish…

What better way to go back-to-school than at an aquarium? Here at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, we have two huge aquariums to choose from, with schools of fish to make any Dr. Seuss fan happy! Here’s our version of the familiar classic. Read, then come and meet all the characters in real life, at … Continued

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And her name is…Gertie!

After a week of public voting, fans chose Gertie as the name for the new giant Pacific octopus in the Pacific Seas Aquarium at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium. The name was one of six names chosen by aquarists. Over 7,100 votes came in online during the week, and the race was close. Gertie topped … Continued

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Blue Lagoon
Meet Day-Glo tropical fish, a shy moral eel and more in our Lagoon habitat.