If there's anything that can rival visitor affection for the new sea otter pup, Kit, it will be this new arrival in our Outer Bay exhibit. Yes! A new ocean sunfish. The mola mola, one of the world's oddest, and yet most popular animals to frequent our gallery!
The new mola quickly settled into its new home yesterday, after time spent behind the scenes learning how to recognize the target that will indicate it's meal time.
Head mola wrangler, Micheal Howard is pretty impressed with his new charge. After only an hour on exhibit he lowered the mola target and the walnut-sized brain immediately sprang into action and showed up for food. After two further sessions, the mola has also learned where it should "station". This will ensure it's out of the way of other feedings of rays or sharks.
At 50 pounds it's still a youngster, so if you come visit or check out the webcam, don't look for the behemoths of past. This one is still relatively small, but we know they grow pretty rapidly. As with all of our molas, there's no guarantee how long this one will stay on exhibit. It's all down to continued successful feedings and the health and well-being of the individual. But this one sure has made a good start. In fact, Micheal noted that this one has learned faster than all its predecessors. Gold medal to the young mola.