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Get to know the Assistant Curator!

Genya Yerkes has been a member of the Key West Aquarium staff for almost 17 years.

Title: Assistant Curator/Operations Manager

  1. What brought you to Key West?

I originally moved here in the summer of 2000 to attend FKCC for their Marine Environmental Technology degree. I also started working for the aquarium that summer and it was my very first job in the zoological industry.

  1. What is your favorite sea animal? Why?

Eek! So many to choose from but my favorite would have to be the octopus. You only have a short time with them because of their short life span but their problem-solving skills are truly mind blowing. It’s fun to create puzzles and enrichment challenges for them. A close second would be giraffe; the time I spent with them at Busch Gardens was an amazing time in my career.

  1. What would be your ideal day out on the water?

Solid breeze, good friends, plentiful drinks, and good tunes.

  1. When did you first become interested in Marine Biology?

I can’t even remember when; anything to do with the water has always been a passion of mine. However, my love and respect for nature was instilled in me by my father.

  1. What do you enjoy most about the KWAQ?

I love that we are a piece of “Old Key West”; there aren’t many left so that truly provides a special experience for our guests.

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