Science And Elbow Grease Keep National Aquarium Clean

by | Dec 16, 2015 | Fish, Science, Tanks | 0 comments

aquarium-diverWorking in a public aquarium for ten years myself, I know first hand the trials and tribulations that staffers go through in keeping the tanks spotless. It is certainly not as easy as it looks and takes a lot of dedication and hard work. The National Aquarium has 2.2 millions gallons of water, and a lot of marine animals. That means that there is also a lot of refuge, uneaten food and other unmentionables in those tanks that need cleaning too.  Bacteria and algae can run wild if left alone for even a couple of days. That takes a toll not only on the beauty of the tank but more importantly, of the health of its residents. “It is a major undertaking to not only keep the exhibits clean, but to keep the animals healthy,” said Jay Bradley, curator of fishes at the National Aquarium. “It does depend on the exhibit how often things are done, but there’s something being worked on every day.” Divers clean the over 3000 pieces of artificial coral in the tank daily, as well as keeping the tanks algae free, while swimming around some big fish and sharks. The aquarium also depends on the help of a team of 950 volunteer divers, who donate their time to cleaning the tanks. I spent  much of my time when I was at the public aquarium in a dive suit cleaning the tanks. It is a very important, and often times not well loved job, but someone has to do it and for good reason. MORE

  • Francis Yupangco

    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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