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Contorversial Portland Aquarium Is Closing Down

Francis YupangcoBy Francis Yupangco 3 years ago
Home  /  Fish  /  Contorversial Portland Aquarium Is Closing Down

portlandlogoVince Covino, former owner and the brother of Ammon Covino (who was convicted of purchasing protected marine life and later on violating his parole) is no longer listed as the owner of Portland Aquarium, which will be closing in February. The closure is allegedly due to the previous landlord of the Portland Aquarium selling to new owners, who will be demolishing the facility. The Aquarium hopes to find a new location to re-open. The current owners of the Portland Aquarium are Chrysty Covino, Vince Covino’s sister-in-law, and a business partner, Shane Shamada. The Portland Aquarium has been under controversy in the past years, with serious allegations of animal abuse from previous employees. However, Vince Covino stands by the care of the animals at the aquarium. “The things some former employees said about us are just flat-out not true,” Covino said Friday during a telephone interview from his home in Boise, Idaho. “We are proud of what we do and proud of the record we’ve established along the way.” This contradicts what former employees have stated about the aquarium, including veterinarian, Mike Corcoran who left only after a few months at the facility. A former employee also came out with a log which captured deaths of nearly 200 marine animals in the Spring of 2013, with causes including starvation, infection and animal attacks. Vince Covino has denied the authenticity of that document. “That so-called death-log was obviously made up,” he said. “Anyone can read it for themselves. It included citations saying snails were dying of congestive heart failure and that other species were dying because of depression. It’s still a shame they decided to print a story they knew was not true.” MORE

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Francis Yupangco
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 Francis Yupangco

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Francis is a marine biologist with an MBA and over 20 years of professional aquarium experience. Francis is the former Aquatic Development Manager at Hagen USA., makers of Fluval brand aquarium products. He co-stars on Nat Geo WILD's reality TV series Fish Tank Kings where he is the resident "Fish Geek" and was Director of Marketing at Living Color Aquariums. He is an avid explorer having visited over 45 countries and lived in 7. At 17, he was among the youngest aquarists ever hired by the Vancouver Aquarium, where he worked for 7 years. His aquatic biology experience ranges from larval fish rearing to the design, construction and operational management of renowned public aquariums around the world. Francis is currently head of marketing at the world's largest vertically integrated fish farming company.

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