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Amazon Gallery - Yacare Caiman Exhibit

Jan. 1st, 2011.

Amazon Gallery - Yacare Caiman Exhibit
snowleopard, 18 Jan 2011
    • snowleopard
      Jan. 1st, 2011.
    • Dagobert
      I always think these sort of exhibits are a bit small for the crocodiles. Is this all the space they have, or do they have more?
    • snowleopard
      The enclosure is a bit small for the two caiman at the aquarium, and this is all the public space available to them. The exhibit was built almost 30 years ago and was part of a major addition to the facility at the time (Amazon).
    • DavidBrown
      Is the rain forest exhibit going to be expanded or remodeled as part of the aquarium's refurbishment? Can you please give a quick overview of the species and exhibits in the rain forest section of the aquarium - this aspect of the Vancouver Aquarium has intrigued me as this feature seems unique among West Coast aquariums (although I guess the new Steinhart Aquarium has a rain forest component if you included the rain forest dome).
    • snowleopard
      I visit the aquarium every 1-2 months, and in the fall and winter it is great to duck into the Tropical Amazon section and warm up as the humidity is cranked in that area and Vancouver is famous for its rain. That zone of the aquarium opened in the early 1980's and was actually already refurbished within the last year with a new coat of paint on some walls, new graphics, and some renovated exhibits.

      I won't go into too much detail with the names of species as while I could do that it would take a very long time...BUT upon first entry a massive tank featuring catfish, arapaima and other large Amazon fish is passed and it is an impressive sight. On the right are a couple of small invertebrate exhibits along with bats, electric eels, piranhas and a very nice mixed-species tank with all sorts of smaller fish and freshwater rays.

      Once that initial zone is finished visitors walk through a quite small rainforest environment that has free-roaming butterflies (in season), scarlet ibis, red-footed tortoises, a couple of basilisk, many birds and several pools of rays. It is very nicely done but extremely tiny in comparison to many other rainforests in American zoos. Upon leaving that area there is a hallway with a Goeldi's monkey exhibit, a yellow anaconda habitat, and three large terrariums with snakes and poison dart frogs. The last section, once visitors exit the rainforest, is a yacare caiman pool, a couple of stick-insect terrariums, and a fake base of a tree with perhaps a dozen terrariums set at unique angles. About half of those exhibits have tarantulas in them and they are set at the level of a small child, and they were all added with the renovation in early 2011.

      Overall North America's 5th largest aquarium (as Vancouver constantly advertises itself) has a decent Amazon section but nothing as extensive as what is contained within Shedd Aquarium in Chicago or other establishments with amazing, awe-inspiring Amazonian areas.
    • DavidBrown
      @snowleopard: thanks for the rundown on the exhibit. From what I have read the Vancouver Aquarium designed and help run the Shark Reef aquarium in Las Vegas. That would probably account for why Shark Reef is a surprisingly excellent aquarium.
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