We cannot wait for our new exhibit, Blacktip Reef, to open in summer of 2013! This coral-filled exhibit, replicating an Indo-Pacific ocean habitat, will feature 15 exciting species including blacktip reef sharks, reticulated whiptail rays, and ornate wobbegong sharks. It will also be the new home for some of our most beloved animals, including our 400-pound green sea turtle Calypso, and zebra sharks Zeke and Zoe. Guests will be able to experience this lively reef from many vantage points, including a new floor-to-ceiling pop-out viewing window that allows you to virtually step inside the exhibit.
It’s a long journey to opening day. Between animal transports, exhibit demolition, new construction, and habitat fabrication, as well as the acquisition of new animals, we’ll have a lot to update you on leading up to next summer. As we continue to build the future home of Blacktip Reef, stay tuned to learn about new changes here on our WATERblog!
Our construction team has been very busy over the last few months building our new Blacktip Reef exhibit!
To give visitors a 160 degree panoramic view of our new Indo-Pacific reef and its inhabitants, the Aquarium had to install a 28 foot acrylic window in one piece. Installing a window of this size proved to be quite a challenge. Our biggest hurdle? Getting the large piece into the building!
Watch this video to see the acrylic piece be lifted into the building and installed into the exhibit:
To fit this large piece into the exhibit, the construction crew had to remove a large exterior window and use crane to lift it two stories.
After being pulled into the building, the acrylic then had to be lowered down one story to be properly installed into the exhibit space.
This new floor-to-ceiling look out area will give visitors the opportunity to step into the reef, experience the vibrant coral and get close to the diverse array of animals!