Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Gourmet Feast for the Beasts Served Daily

Hats off to everyone getting ready to prepare family feasts. Shopping for groceries is one thing. Bringing all of the elements together, cooking it and timing it to arrive on the table at the same time is another. So imagine if you had a huge gathering of hungry mouths to feed every day. YIKES!

Tennessee Aquarium aviculturist Loribeth Aldrich shows us how she uses her culinary talents to create a beautiful and nutritious meal for the birds of the Cove Forest exhibit each morning. After watching the video, consider how much care goes into all of the restaurant quality food served throughout both Aquarium buildings.

The numbers for the Aquarium's daily gourmet feast for the beasts are rather staggering. Carol Haley, the Aquarium's assistant curator of fishes, estimates our seahorses eat literally millions of mysid shrimp eat year. "We serve our seahorses mainly frozen mysid shrimp," said Haley. "Our seahorses are fed three times daily. We have 100 seahorses in our collection. If each seahorse eats 20 shrimp per feeding, that's 2,190,000 shrimp in a year." (Math teachers might want to add that word problem to the next quiz for bonus points.)

So there's just two examples. Want more big numbers to munch on? Check out this classic blog post:

Earlier this year celebrity chef Alton Brown visited the Aquarium's kitchen with Haley. He was pretty amazed at the amount and quality of the food served to our critters.

Once we get past this week of turkey and dressing, check out our website for some of Alton's sustainable seafood recipes. Catfish soup or Baked Oysters Brownfeller might make tasty additions to your upcoming holiday parties.

We still have a few Alton Brown signed cookbooks available in our gift shops. They make nice gifts if you want to say, "Thanks for a great Thanksgiving dinner" or get a jump on your holiday shopping.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving. The Aquarium will be closed for the holiday on Thursday, November 24th.

Bring the family by to relax and enjoy a "Tropical Holiday Adventure" this weekend.

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