Sonntag, 9. Mai 2010

A quick guide to Sydney Aquarium - Part 2

My absolute favourite part of the Sydney Aquarium was the large ocean tanks. In 2004 only one was available filled with sharks and sting rays, but now a second one has opened which houses everything from turtles to dugongs (Dogong dugon).
The best part about these large tanks are the underwater tunnels. It is quite an adventure to walk underneath sharks and sting rays, turtles, dugongs and many ocean fish. These tanks are filled with live and only diving on the Great Barrier Reef could top such a magical experience. The tunnels are low roofed so you can reach out your hands and touch the glass when a shark or ray strives past; it seems as if you are touching them skin to skin.

The southern ocean is represented in the large oceanarium featuring large shoals of fish as well as many species of sharks and rays. The largest shark in this tank is the grey nurse shark (Carcharias taurus), it is over 3.5m long and weighs around 300 kilos. It is one of Sydney Aquarium’s flagship species; it is highly endangered in the wild as it was hunted down in the past because of its vicious look. In fact it is quite harmless to humans and is now very rare.

The Great Barrier Reef is home to around 1500 fish and 500 coral species; many are present at the Sydney Aquarium’s 2 million litre tank which is the world’s largest to highlight the enormous variety of life in this habitat. Colourful corals and clown anemone fish, triggerfish, vibrant tangs and angelfish zipping around then suddenly stopping in their tracks to be attended to by a tiny cleaner wrasse; deceptively beautiful lionfish hovering over coral formations in search of their next meal; vividly patterned lobsters all elegantly moving in rhythm with the classical music softly playing in the background.
All in all, the Sydney Aquarium is one of the attractions not to be missed when visiting Australia. It is a joy to watch different species in well kept tanks with lots of relevant information. The ability to couple your tickets with another new attraction right next door rounds off an eventful day; the Sydney Wildlife World, which hosts anything from kangaroos to wombats and koalas.
So if you are in Sydney, make sure to visit the Sydney Aquarium.

Part 1

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