Conservation & Research

ATLANTA (April 9, 2024) – Georgia Aquarium, the largest aquarium in the Western Hemisphere, recently formalized conservation partnerships with two of Japan’s preeminent aquariums. The three aquariums share a unique distinction: their care for endangered whale sharks and manta rays. It’s a unique privilege and responsibility that few zoological organizations in the world share.

Georgia Aquarium is partnering with Okinawa Churashima Research Foundation, including its Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium and Osaka Kaiyukan Aquarium, to collaborate on marine conservation strategies, share learnings, and exchange expertise. The partnership between the organizations will focus on endangered species, including whale sharks, manta rays, and coral reefs.

“We are proud to formalize our partnership in a joint quest to protect marine biodiversity,” said Brian Davis, Ph.D., president and CEO of Georgia Aquarium. “Together, we can leverage our combined expertise and resources to foster groundbreaking research and conservation initiatives that promise a brighter future for marine ecosystems worldwide.”

The agreement fosters long-term cooperation in research, conservation, animal care, and staff development. It includes commitments for joint research programs, data sharing, staff exchanges, and public education initiatives. With an initial term of 10 years and options for renewal, the partnership is intended to make a lasting impact on the health and well-being of marine environments.

Representatives from Osaka Aquarium Kaiyukan also visited Georgia Aquarium to get a first-hand look at operations here. “The exchange of staff and expertise between our two aquariums will foster innovation and new approaches to protecting marine life,” Davis added. “Our collaboration also promises to amplify our public education efforts, raising awareness about the critical need for marine conservation and inspiring action within our communities.”



Georgia Aquarium is a leading 501(c)(3) non-profit organization located in Atlanta, Ga. that is Humane Certified by American Humane and accredited by the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Georgia Aquarium is committed to working on behalf of all marine life through education, preservation, exceptional animal care, and research across the globe. Georgia Aquarium continues its mission each day to inspire, educate, and entertain its millions of guests about the aquatic biodiversity throughout the world through its engaging exhibits and tens of thousands of animals across its eight major galleries.

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