The New York Aquarium is the oldest continually operating aquarium in the United States, located on the Riegelmann Boardwalk in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York City. It was founded at Castle Garden in Battery Park, Manhattan in 1896, and moved to Coney Island in 1957. The aquarium is operated by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) as part of its integrated system of four zoos and one aquarium, most notably the Bronx Zoo. It is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). As part of WCS, the aquarium’s mission is to save wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature.
The facility occupies 14 acres and boasts 266 species of aquatic wildlife. Its mission is to raise public awareness about issues facing the ocean and its inhabitants with special exhibits, public events and research. The New York Seascape program, based out of the aquarium, is WCS’s local conservation program designed to restore healthy populations of marine species and protect New York waters, which are vital to the area’s economic and cultural vitality.