They may only be six inches long, but the first baby sharks born at Skegness Aquarium have proved a masssive attraction during the half-term holidays.
Six baby Bamboo Cat Sharks have gone on display in a ‘washing machine’ tank that lets visitors get ‘inside’ and really close – and staff say they are already taking the visitor attention in their stride, just like mum and dad.
It is a fantastic achievement for the breeding programme at the aquarium, which only opened in 2015.
The first baby arrived on Christmas Eve and supervisor Louise Chapman said: “It was a nice early Christmas present but since then there have been 11 babies born. We are really excited because these are the first baby sharks to be bred in captivity in Lincolnshire and it is a credit to the dedication of our breeding team.”
Hours are spent every day perfecting the formula to create an environment for the fish to thrive and breed. Louise said: “The babies are now out of quarantine and we have been to put them on display, but they won’t be reunited with their parents just yet.”
Curator Sam Rees explained: “Bamboo Cat Sharks are not very good parents.”
We are really excited because these are the first baby sharks to be bred in captivity in Lincolnshire and it is a credit to the dedication of our breeding teamSkegness Aquarium supervisor Louise Chapman
* Bamboo Cat Sharks originate from Thailand, Malasia and Indonesia. Skegness Aquarium has three adults - two female and a male – that grow to be two to three foot long.
To protect themselves from being eaten by other fish, the stripey babies mimic poisonous sea eels.
The babies’ diet includes worms, crabs and small fish. Curator Sam Rees said: “The eggs were hatched in a nursery and we will now nurture the babies until they are about a year old, when it will be safe to reunite them with their parents.”
Visit Skegness Aquarium website at www.skegness-aquarium.uk