Hello everyone, I’m guessing by now we’re all aware of the situation that’s going on out there and I hope that everyone is doing okay during these troubled times. However, I would like everyone to know that although Blue Planet is closed and all on lockdown, our animals are not, and Blue Planet is still running as normal in terms of our animal care and well-being. In this blog I’ll be talking about how you look after an aquarium during a lockdown such as this one.
With the building being currently closed this means there are of course no shows or presentations but we do still have a full team on both Zoological & Dive Team, who are in everyday to look after and maintain all of our exhibits, everything from cleaning our Pelicans to feeding our Sharks and Caimans, they’re there on hand to do it. Even though we have a team working with our animals we are taking relevant steps to ensure the safety and health of our team also, this means that we wash our hands frequently throughout the work day as well when we enter and exit the building. We are also being sure to not have physical contact with each other.
Due to the fact that people aren’t able to see what we do during these times we’re currently doing Live sessions on social media to allow people to see what it is that we get on with behind the scenes and during our daily routine, we also use these sessions to educate the public on issues regarding conservation and we also open up the floor to allow viewers to ask questions as well. People usually ask what it is that we get up to day by day and there really is no way to sum it up in one statement.
I’m going to start with of course the main tank as it is our largest exhibit here. Blue Planet’s Main Tank is massive, at 3.8 million litres it’s a sizeable tank that has a variety of animals, from large Sharks to small fish and Stingrays, and with this variety comes a variety of ways that we need to maintain them. For example, our stingrays have to be target fed by hand and this is the same with our Zebra Sharks, whereas our Sand Tigers are fed from the surface via large pole. The dive team is in water every day and will start by doing our daily feeds which can include feeding our Nurse Sharks, Zebra Sharks and Morays and once we have done all our feed’s we then go onto doing general maintenance.
Cleaning our tank is done in a few different ways, the main one is using our vaccing system which is used to first clean all of our rocks which is a never-ending task due to the sheer size of the tank, once the rocks are clean we then clean our sand. Doing all of this can take us several weeks to get the tank fully clean and by the time we get the tank clean, its then time to start all over again.
In terms of care of the rest of the aquarium, it is split amongst the members of the zoological team which is composed of different team members who are specialists in their areas. For example, we have an onsite herpetologist who specialises in Reptiles, Amphibians, Insects and Arachnids as well as an onsite Coral specialist and Freshwater Aquarist. Each one is proficient in what they are caring for and by splitting the team members in this way we ensure that there’s enough members of the team to care for all the animals in the aquarium as well as having enough expertise on site to help with all situations.
The building is also under constant supervision and we have someone on site 24 hours a day, with our Zoo & Dive team during the day and a watchman at night. So there you have it, a quick blog to explain how we look after the Aquarium during a lockdown. If you’re looking for any further information or have any questions please be sure to keep an eye on our social media platforms for our live sessions.
Finally, thank you for reading and I wish you and everyone else best wishes during this period.
For more information please visit the Blue Planet Aquarium website by clicking here.
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