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The Warsaw Voice » Culture » June 17, 2010
On the town
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Sharks Arrive at Warsaw Zoo
June 17, 2010   
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Warsaw Zoo April 10 opened a new aquarium with sharks, the largest single fish tank in Poland.

As you come to the aquarium, you first pass by the glass wall of the green hippo pool, where you can usually see a pair of hippos in the water. Then as you enter a large, shaded room, a vast underwater space opens before your eyes. Through the panoramic glass of the tank, you can pick out the dark shape of a shark. The fish is only one-and-a-half meters long, but it will grow—the sand tiger shark can reach three-and-a-half meters in length.

The tank holds around 90 metric tons of salt water. The curved glass is 10 meters wide and three meters tall. The fish in the tank are species which inhabit the offshore waters of warm seas and oceans. Apart from the largest resident, the sand tiger shark, near the surface you can spot three small blacktip reef sharks. The fish that moves like a flying kite is the spotted eagle ray. You can also notice small, flat fish of the Zebrasoma species—scats and yellow tang—but you may have some difficulty spotting the small Arabian carpet sharks, as they hide near the bottom. These fish can grow up to 70 cm in length.

Installing a shark tank was a huge undertaking, involving building a large public aquarium, picking the right pumps, filters and decorative details and then importing the fish and helping them acclimatize. In charge of the shark tank is Rafał Okoński, the head of Warsaw Zoo’s aquarium department.

Krzysztof Teisseyre with Grzegorz Soszka and Agata Borecka
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