Ever wondered what it would be like to touch a starfish or sea cucumber? You can soon touch one in the New Year at the revamped Taraporewala Aquarium. Likely to open by end of March,the new aquarium will have a touch pool,where curious visitors can touch star fish,sea urchins,sea cucumbers and turtles.
This year,exotic fish from overseas will be introduced at the new aquarium with fisheries officials pegging the number of new varieties of marine fish at 70. You can try and find Nemo in the Maroon Clownfish tank,besides getting to see Azure Damsel,Blueline Demoiselle,Purple Firefish,Cloudy Damsel,Copperband Butterflyfish,Schooling Bannerfish,Raccoon Butterflyfish,White Tail Trigger,Clown Triggerfish and Blue Ribbon Eel. The 40 new varieties of freshwater fish would include Red Devil,Jaguar,Electric Blue Jack Dempsey,Frontosa and Catfish. These fishes will be housed in larger tanks than before with imported flexi glass for better visibility.
Moving around the aquarium would literally become a cooler experience in 2014 as the whole structure will be centrally air-conditioned. If you are fatigued,the aquarium now has on offer a fish spa therapy. You can dip your feet in a tub of water filled with small fish called Garra rufa.
While there will be 10 tanks of Garra Rufa for the therapy,marine and tropical fish will be housed in 16 tanks each and freshwater fish will be housed in nine tanks. Moreover,each tank will also have a theme specific to the kind of fish it houses. Aquascaping ad LED lighting will bring alive the coral ecosystems as well as the rocky barren ecosystems. A special semi-circular tank has been designed to house the jelly fish.
For those more inclined towards learning about fishes and the marine ecosystem,the new aquarium will have a 50-seater theatre screening documentaries on fish,marine ecosystems and environment conservation.
Children can now learn about fish and marine ecosystems through the documentaries. People can also enjoy the foot spa. You now have every reason to visit the new aquarium, said Shyamsunder Shinde,fisheries commissioner.