Without 4,000 to 5,000 daily visitors or the steady stream of volunteers, the Seattle Aquarium is almost a ghost town compared to its usual humming self.
But no matter the level of activity in the aquarium’s public spaces, a core crew of staffers has to keep working to care for the facility’s creatures.
The crew of about 20 people are doing without the army of usual volunteers, said aquarium spokesman Tim Kuniholm.
“It’s quite a lot of work,” said Grant Abel, the aquarium’s director of life sciences. “There’s the diving, the feeding, the cleaning that has to happen every day.”
The aquarium let in a Seattle Times photographer this week to showcase some of the work it’s doing online — from live otter cams to virtual field trips — and to document the new routine that starts with a 6-feet-apart “group huddle” and includes a check up for a cooperative otter and the dissection of a cuttlefish for an upcoming webinar.
The aquarium is also hosting virtual story time weekly on its Facebook page as well as a chance to watch divers live and ask questions.
As part of its celebration of Earth Action Week, the aquarium’s executive chef, Molly DeMers, will be hosting a session on the facility’s website on cooking with sustainable seafood.