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Shark Week in Japan -Our Client's Japanese TV Interview

  • April 24, 2009
  • |
  • Posted By Justin @ 8:53 AM

As a marine biologist, an aquarist, a hobbyist, I did not have a great feeling or attitude with regards to keeping a Black Tip Reef Shark in a smallish tank. We got her at 17", I found her in Los Angeles during one of my many visits to the fish importers gathered along the outskirts of LAX. I knew my client only wanted a shark or nothing. The tank was 130" Long x 48" Wide and 40" High. No small tank for sure, 1,000 gallons in a gorgeous penthouse apartment on 5th avenue with 360 degree views of Chelsea.  It was a spontaneous acquisition, and along with a Conspiculatus angel, a Kidako moray, and a Bubblebee grouper we left for NYC.

She arrived sure enough in a crate 36" x 36". The acclimation process was interesting, she was active, and accepted the tank pretty quickly as her new home. I must say that part of my willingness to give the shark a try was that the residence is very private, and the clients were never in residence and did not have loud dinner parties, annoying visitors, and the place was very quiet. She is left alone for the most part (she ate all of her tank mates including the giant hermits), our service team is there almost daily. She is fed only the best, smelt and large peeled and deveined wild gulf shrimp (Wholefoods of course). She is a joy and she fit the tank. She has been there for a year now and all good things must come to an end. With expert care she has grown now to 22". Now must transport her back to our facility and place her in one of our large cylinder tanks.  I am not sure the client wants a new shark, he is thinking about larger marine fish. Chelsea will miss her. As a rule, these animals should not be kept in tanks under 4,000 gallons. Requiem Sharks should ideally be placed in aquariums that can hold them once they reach their full adult size. This technically means that the length of the tank should be 4 times the adult length of the shark and at least 1.5 - 2 times their adult length in width (25' x 10'). This does not mean that they can't be placed in smaller enclosures as young. You must have an exit strategy in place when the shark out grows their tank. We will try to film the transport of the Black Tip and place it on the blog.




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