Conservation & Science

Exploring a chamber of nautilus secrets

As a second grader, seven-year-old Ellen Umeda charted her hopes and dreams in a journal, including this entry:

“When I grow up, I want to work at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.”

Aquarist Ellen Umeda is living a childhiood dream: working at the aquarium and raising chambered nautilus hatchlings.

Today, Aquarist Ellen Umeda is doing just that—and breaking new ground as she raises one of the most challenging species housed at any aquarium: the chambered nautilus.

The Sunnyvale native and UC San Diego graduate is taking the lead in caring for our first-ever chambered nautilus hatchlings, and trying new approaches that could someday lead to a breakthrough in raising and breeding these beautiful, shelled cephalopods.

“I’m lucky to be working with an animal that’s still quite a mystery,” Ellen said. “There are so many unknowns.” Read more…

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