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NAUSICAA welcomes new residents

It’s summertime at NAUSICAA, in Boulogne-sur-Mer! And this provides the opportunity to welcome the latest residents that have joined the French National Sea Centre’s 36,000 other animals.

The longsnout seahorses (Hippocampus Reidi) have just given birth to a large number of babies. Little longsnout seahorses were born a few weeks ago and after a period spent growing behind the scenes, the public can now observe them close to their parents in the exhibition’s biodiversity space!

NAUSICAA has presented seahorses to its visitors since its opening in 1991, and eighty baby seahorses have been born at NAUSICAA since April 2014.

There are two seahorse species on show at NAUSICAA: the longsnout seahorse (Hippocampus Reidi), and the short-snouted seahorse (Hippocampus Hippocampus) on show in the Mediterranean space, next to the loggerhead sea turtle.

Additonally, a young zebra shark has been added to the Island Stories exhibition, while its congener is now roaming around the tropical lagoon where it can continue to grow under the fascinated gaze of the visitors.

The young zebra shark has left the NAUSICAA reserves measuring about 60 centimetres; this young female’s markings have not yet reached maturity but her stripes are gradually changing into black spots.

The zebra shark that has been moved to the lagoon is now aged 4, and has reached a length of one metre. It can therefore swim with the tropical fish in a 400,000-litre volume of water.

There are more than 140 sharks, of about 13 different species, in the NAUSICAA tanks (including leopard sharks, nurse sharks, zebra sharks, sand tiger sharks, sandbar sharks). Four of the sharks (1 sand tiger shark and 3 sandbar sharks) have been at NAUSICAA since 1991! Sharks from the European coasts (lesser and greater spotted dogfish) are born at the attraction regularly, and involvement in various breeding programmes should lead to more births in the near future.

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