Meerkats” And “Africa” Exhibits Extended Into 2013

Amazing Meercats Extend their Stay

Visitors to The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk are getting more chances to be entertained and fascinated by a special collection of exotic African creatures, including six amusing meerkats.

The special exhibit “Africa: From the Desert to the Sea” will stay open for another five months, through Jan. 20, 2013. And its companion exhibit, “Meerkats,” has been extended through Labor Day 2013. Previously, both had been scheduled to close after this Labor Day (Sept. 3).

The meerkats are very popular with visitors young and old to the Aquarium. The extention of ‘Africa’ through the holidays and into the new year allows the Aquarium the necessary time to prepare for their next special exhibit.

Meerkats (Suricata suricatta) are members of the mongoose family that live in social “mobs” in the Kalahari Desert, in the southern African nations of Botswana and South Africa. (Timon, the comical sidekick in Disney’s “The Lion King,” is a meerkat.)

The Maritime Aquarium’s “Meerkats” exhibit features six sibling meerkats – three males, three females – born in July 2009 at the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City, Utah. Their Aquarium exhibit offers lots of opportunities for climbing, digging and exploring. For young Aquarium visitors, a special viewing bubble lets children pop up right among the meerkats.

The animals are so popular that the Aquarium installed a “meerkat cam,” for visitors who want to check up on the animals’ activities remotely. (Click on it at

The “Africa: From the Desert to the Sea” exhibit displays some of the fascinating but lesser-known aquatic creatures of Africa, including lungfish, electric catfish and colorful cichlids and reef fish.

Both special exhibits are free with Maritime Aquarium general admission, which is $13.95 for adults, $12.95 for seniors 65+, and $10.50 for children 2-12.

A new special exhibit, “Dangerous Creatures,” is scheduled to open on Feb. 16 in the space currently occupied by “Africa: From the Desert to the Sea.”

For more information about The Maritime Aquarium’s exhibits, IMAX movies and programs, go online to or call (203) 852-0700.

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