Grab your passport because you’re about to travel around the world! The first stop on this journey of a drop of water is a trip through the diverse Rivers of the World. You'll get a glimpse at everything from yellow bellied freshwater turtles to fierce piranha to the behemoth alligator gar. Enjoy the variety of animals that inhabit the American and Rainforest rivers, interactive displays, and demonstrations. Keep an eye out for our Walk Around Animals who will be traveling through the Aquarium with our OdySea Animal Care Specialists!

The Amazon River

Did You Know?

The Amazon River is over 4,000 miles long, which is the distance from New York City to Rome, Italy! It is the second largest river in the world and is home to over 3,000 species of fish, with more constantly being discovered.

Notable species

True Piranha

Piranha

(Pygocentrus piraya)

Piranha attacks on humans are anecdotal for the most part, but the Piranha will become aggressive if it feels stressed, threatened, or hungry.

Diet

Small fish and insects, seeds, and aquatic material

Size

Up to 20 inches long

Habitat

Sao Fracisco river basin

Range

Sao Fracisco river basin in Brazil

Paddlefish

American Paddlefish

(Polyodon spathula)

Paddlefish have been around for 400 million years, but now are listed as Vulnerable, largely due to man through overfishing, the building of dams, and poaching for caviar.

Diet

Zooplankton (organisms drifting in oceans, seas, and fresh water bodies)

Size

Average length is 5 to 7 feet and weight 60 pounds, but can weigh as much as 200 pounds

Habitat

Many types of riverine habitats but often seek out deeper, low current areas such as side channels, backwaters, oxbow and other river-lakes, and tailwaters below dams.

Range

Native to Mississippi and Missouri tributaries and Mobile Bay drainage basin. Currently found in twenty-two states in the U.S.

Pacu

Black Pacu

(Colossoma macropomum)

Pacu are often mistaken for Piranha.

Diet

Zooplankton, snails, insects, and decaying plants

Size

3 ½ feet and over 60 pounds

Habitat

Main river channels and flood plains, moving into flooded forests during the rainy season

Range

Native to the Amazon and Orinoco Basins. Now widely distributed throughout South America

largemouth Bass

Largemouth Bass

(Micropterus salmoides)

Largemouth bass are largely responsible for controlling the population of smaller fish such as bluegill and yellow perch.

Diet

Smaller fish, snails, crayfish, frogs, snakes, and water insects

Size

Can reach 29.5 inches and 20 pounds, but average around 5 pounds.

Habitat

Lakes, ponds, reservoirs, large rivers, and slow-moving streams.

Range

North America

Common Carp

Common Carp

(Cyprinus carpio)

Wild carp are so few that they are listed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as Vulnerable, although farm raised carp that have been introduced to U.S. waters are so abundant that they are depleting some U.S. fish species.

Diet

Water plants, insects, crustaceans, and worms

Size

Up to 4 feet and up to 85 pounds

Habitat

Prefer large bodies of slow or standing water and soft, vegetative sediments.

Range

Lakes and rivers in Europe and Asia

Gila Trout

Gila Trout

(Oncorhynchus gilae)

Habitat destruction caused the Gila trout to be listed as endangered in 2006. However, Arizona Game & Fish along with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service began an aggressive program in an effort to preserve this native species.

Diet

Opportunistic feeders, they mainly feed on aquatic and terrestrial insects and invertebrates

Size

Approximately 11 inches

Habitat

Small mountain water streams, and in confined pools

Range

Tributaries of the Gila River in Arizona and New Mexico

Apache Trout

Apache Trout

(Oncorhynchus apache)

The Apache trout, the state fish of Arizona, is a critically endangered species.

Diet

Terrestrial and aquatic insects, small fishes and zooplankton

Size

6 to 24 inches and up to 6 pounds

Habitat

Clear, cool streams in the White Mountains that flow through coniferous forests and marshes. Also have been introduced into several lakes in the area.

Range

Cool streams in the White Mountains of Arizona that flow through forests and marshes. Also native to the Salt River and Little Colorado River watersheds