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Our Cowfish

Fish face

The longhorn cowfish that is our unofficial mascot actually lives in an aquarium in Cape Town, South Africa. While we are not particularly big fans of aquariums, we are big fans of cowfish.

These funny little fish live in tropical or subtropical waters. Their habitat, being coral reefs, reef flats or protected seaward reefs, is often threatened. So we think it’s worth knowing something about them.

They are omnivorous, sometimes uprooting their food by blowing jets of water into the sand. While ours was quite small, they can grow up to 50 cms (20 inches) long. Their unique method of moving about, called ostraciiform swimming, causes them to look as if they are hovering. They are such slow swimmers, cowfish are easily caught by hand, making a grunting noise when captured. Their horns are mostly hollow and made of mineralized collagen fibers. If damaged, these horns can grow back within a few months. When severely stressed, the cowfish may exude a deadly toxin that is unique among fish poisons and quite a deterrent, apparently. They mate just before or after sunset.

We chose the cowfish for our mascot because it’s just goofy enough to be true. It reminds us that there is always something new to learn about the world and always a reason to do better for our planet. We love cowfish, and we hope you will too.

Search our website here. If you can't find what you're looking for, please email us at becurious@thelearnary.ca

The Learnary is located on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh people. We are humbled by this history and grateful for our use of this land.

Phone: 604-215-1146

2643 East Hastings 

Vancouver, BC 

V5K 1Z5



Free (2 hour) public parking is available 1/2 block north of Hastings between Penticton and Kamloops.

Store Hours

Our store front is now open with reduced hours!

Wednesday 10:30 - 3:30

Friday 10:30 - 3:30

Sundays 12:00 - 5:00

* Please note, payment is by card or exact change only

You can also purchase online for no-contact pick-up in store.

No-contact deliveries are also available for a small fee.


Accessibility is important to us. Please note, however, that we are in an old building with limitations.

The Learnary Storefront is on one level.

The front entrance door is 34” wide. There is a short slope outside the front door which rises approximately 5” over 13".

Our bathroom is approximately 57” x 60”.  To access, you need to pass through three doorways. The smallest has a width of 26”. The bathroom is non-gendered.

Our back door (private entrance) has five wooden steps.  

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