Since closing our curatorial team, who care for the animals and maintain their life support systems, have been destocking tanks and decommissioning exhibits. Some of the animals have been permanently placed in other aquariums, and some animals will be housed off site and returned once the works are complete.
Many reef fish from the biodiversity tunnel exhibits, our seagrass tank, fisheries tank, and the foyer exhibits were relocated to our colours tank near the cafe, to refugia on the roof or into the coral reef exhibit, the world’s largest living coral reef aquarium.
The first animal that delighted guests when they visited, was this magnificent anemone and the clownfish that called it home. The anemone has been “replanted” into our coral reef exhibit, and the clownfish remained with their home. Anemones have a muscular foot, also known as a pedal disc, that keeps them in place and also helps them move around the Reef. So, while we’ve “planted” this anemone, we may find it walking around with its muscular foot to explore its new home.
Due to the operational requirements when caring for animals, it was identified that during the transitional works, it was in the animals’ best interest to be relocated offsite. Aquarists worked with local stakeholders to relocate some of the visitor favourites.
Our green tree python, Binda, meaning “green place” in a local Indigenous language was moved to Berserker Pythons. We were happy to hear that her transition went smoothly, as she has been eating well and even shed her scales. Green tree pythons are native to New Guinea and along the north-eastern coastline of Australia, adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef in Cape York.
Our Ornate Crayfish have been rehomed with Ornatas where they will become dads as part of the breeding program at the Toomulla hatchery.
Fun Fact: did you know a female lobster is called a hen and a male lobster is called a cock?
Jellyfish were transferred to James Cook University, and shrimp were provided to the Australian Institute of Marine Science to assist in cleaning their tank mates.
Our reptiles have been relocated to Billabong Sanctuary who will care for our saltwater croc, freshwater croc and freshwater turtle. Visitors to Billabong Sanctuary will be able to say “hello” to these familiar individuals within their new home and exhibits.