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SeaQuest Littleton to close after years of citations, injuries to visitors and animals

The interactive aquarium zoo will close its Littleton location February 4.
Posted at 7:18 AM, Jan 29, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-29 09:23:53-05

LITTLETON, Colo. — A controversial interactive aquarium zoo in the Denver metro area is closing its doors for good after years of citations and reported injuries to visitors and animals.

SeaQuest will close its Littleton location permanently on February 4, the business announced on Facebook, saying it will still operate in states that support its interactive business model.

Since it opened in June 2018 inside Southwest Plaza, Denver7 has heard from families with some less than favorable experiences at SeaQuest Littleton.

The facility’s interactive business model was something animal welfare advocates have been filing complaints against for years, PETA’s Michelle Sinnott said.

“It forces wild animals into direct contact encounters to bring in money. That’s what it boils down to,” Sinnot, who is the director of Captive Animal Law Enforcement at the PETA Foundation, said.

In Colorado, state records show at least 30 injuries between June 2018 and January 2019. In one incident, a python struck an employee and latched onto their hand. In another incident, a little girl was bitten while feeding an iguana.

Visitors weren't the only one injured at SeaQuest Littleton. A sugar glider had to have her tail amputated after becoming entangled in her enclosure.

The state Department of Agriculture issued a cease and desist order after finding too many birds inside SeaQuest's bird exhibit.

Eventually, Colorado Parks and Wildlife suspended SeaQuest's license, but only for animals it regulates, allowing the aquarium to stay open.

“It’s the animals who paid the price at the end of the day,” Sinnott said.

SeaQuest will be safely relocating its animals, according to its Facebook post. Their care and well-being remain an utmost priority, according to the company.

Just last year, two other SeaQuest locations, one in Connecticut and another in Georgia, also closed permanently.

SeaQuest Littleton to close after years of citations, injuries to visitors and animals

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