CURATOR HIGHLIGHTS BIG FISH CAMPAIGN

The curator of Bristol Aquarium is joining forces with experts from across the UK and Europe to help spearhead a 2013 campaign to highlight the growing problem of so called ‘tankbusting’ fish species.

The aim of the Big Fish campaign is to lessen the number of large tropical and marine fish species which have to be rehomed every year by public aquariums and zoos after being sold as pets.

Formed by the public aquariums themselves, and supported by many industry experts and hobbyists, the Big Fish Campaign was forged through concern over the high number of large fish species which are sold and then later have to be rehomed when they have outgrown their owners’ tanks.

Dan joined marine experts at a special meeting held at the Zoological Society of London this week to agree ways to tackle the problem.

“We are already talking to the larger pet store chains and have had some very positive responses from them,” said Dan.

“One has definitely confirmed they are on board and we are very hopeful that nine more will join them over the coming months.

“We have also had interest from the South Africa and I will be liaising with colleagues in Spain, where I am originally from, to highlight the issue with both aquariums and trade organisations.

“Every week we receive phone calls and requests from the public to re-home fish and other exotic pets which have outgrown their tanks.

We help where we can but we have limited resources and if the individual creatures cannot find a suitable new home then their options are very limited – there are many examples of large catfish and other species being released into the wild,” he added.

Bristol Aquarium is highlighting the dangers of ‘tank-buster fish’ with a giant freshwater display entirely populated with donated species.

Their 60,0000-litre Amazon display is home to a variety of pacus, catfish, Oscars, plecs, turtles and terrapins all of which have been donated to the aquarium after becoming homeless or outgrowing their original tanks.

Issued by Bristol Aquarium. For more information and to arrange interviews and picture opportunities please contact David Waines on 0117 934 0944 or Dan de Castro on 0117 934 0943.