Bristol Aquarium is now home to two Arabian Carpetsharks (Chiloscyllium arabicum), one of the smallest species of reef sharks in the World!
Currently a little over one year old, these young sharks measure just 50cm. They will grow to be a maximum of 80cm and reach full maturity at around 45-55cm in length.
The two Arabian Carpetsharks were hatched from shark eggs into pups at one of the Aquarium’s sister sites before being re-homed to Bristol’s large coral seas display. Bristol Aquarium would like to challenge visitors to spot one of the smallest species of shark during their visit!
Stacey Tonkin, Aquarist at Bristol Aquarium said: “We are really excited to share this new Shark species to the Aquarium with our visitors. It brings the total Shark species on display here to seven!
“When we first introduced them to the tank we couldn’t find them for a few days whilst they settled, until we finally saw one when it poked it’s face out of a bunch of eels! They are brown in colour and are great at hiding in the rocks. Their favourite place to sit is by our underwater tunnel with our other reef Sharks so keep an eye out for them there.” Stacey added.
Arabian Carpetsharks are listed as ‘near threatened’ by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), as there is increasing fishing pressure and habitat degradation within its range. Aquariums play an important part to help preserve such species through a variety of methods, including captive breeding.
This Easter, at Bristol Aquarium our Aquatic Adventures event runs from Saturday 9th of April up until Sunday 24th of April with lots of egg-cellent talks and activities to get involved with!
Not only will Aquarium visitors be able to try and spot these new Sharks, they will also have the opportunity to get up close to real shark eggs for themselves! The team at the Aquarium have collected and preserved over 100 shark eggs for visitors to enjoy.
Bristol Aquarium is home to hundreds of marine animals from across the World’s waters. Enjoy the large coral seas display from an impressive floor to ceiling window and through an underwater tunnel!