Birch Aquarium Publishes Its First Children's Book

Thu, 4/30/2009 - 12:17 PM

By Shannon Casey

LaJolla, CA - Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego, announces the publication of its first children’s book: What Color Would You Be to Hide in the Sea? Inspired by the aquarium exhibit Art of Deception, this stunning new book explores and celebrates the fascinating camouflage strategies used by some of the ocean’s most spectacular creatures.

Camouflage is an essential survival strategy, especially in the oceans. It helps prey to escape detection and predators to sneak up on prey. Marine animals featured in the book exemplify a variety of camouflage tactics — from false eye spots, to a squirt of ink, to limbs that resemble seaweed.

What Color Would You Be to Hide in the Sea? features a rich blend of astonishing color photographs from the aquarium’s exhibit, lush watercolors, playful poems and fascinating science notes that offer children and adults an opportunity to uncover marine creatures normally hidden in the sea. 

Created exclusively by Birch Aquarium at Scripps, this book helps support the aquarium’s mission to provide ocean science education, to interpret Scripps Oceanography research and to promote conservation.

“What Color Would You Be to Hide in the Sea? is one more creative way we’re bringing people and the ocean closer together,” said Nigella Hillgarth, Birch Aquarium at Scripps executive director. “We’re delivering our message of ocean discovery and conservation beyond the aquarium walls to generations of readers through this colorful and entertaining book.”

The book was made possible through the generous underwriting of Scripps Oceanographic Society members Marty and Russ Ries, who share the aquarium’s goal of inspiring young people to take an interest in the wonders of the ocean world, to learn about science and to increase ocean literacy.

Recognition of support also goes to members of the San Diego Underwater Photographic Society, whose alluring images of marine life accompany the poetry published in this book. Watercolor fish illustrations produced by Eques, Inc. are also featured.

This first-edition book is available for $18.95 at the aquarium bookshop, open 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. It may also be ordered through the bookshop at 858-534-8753 or online at

About Birch Aquarium at Scripps
Birch Aquarium at Scripps is the public exploration center for the world-renowned Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. Perched on a
bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the aquarium features more than 60 habitats of fish and invertebrates from the cold waters of the Pacific Northwest to the tropical waters of Mexico and the Caribbean. An interactive museum showcases research discoveries by Scripps scientists on climate, Earth and ocean science. Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Birch Aquarium welcomes an annual attendance of more than 400,000, including 45,000 school children.

Visit Birch Aquarium at Scripps

Location: 2300 Expedition Way, La Jolla, Calif.
Phone: 858-534-FISH
Hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily
Admission: $11 Adult, 18+
$9 Senior, 60+
$7.50 Youth, 3-17
Free Children, 2 and under
Free Scripps Oceanographic Society Members
Directions: From Interstate 5, exit at La Jolla Village Drive.
West one mile. Left on Expedition Way.
Parking: Birch Aquarium offers three-hour courtesy parking.

To view Birch Aquarium's web page on Z&A, go to:

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