THE FALMOUTH AQUARIUM - SMALL
Text and photographs by David Marshall
A helping hand?
16th July 2013, the Falmouth Aquarium made national media headlines in the U.K.
when press reports from the Western Morning News were syndicated to several major
newspapers and news websites. These reports concerned an SOS that was sent out
from the Aquarium owners to the St Austell Brewery. With the U.K. suffering from
an exceptional heat wave, aquariums housing both native and tropical marine creatures
at the Aquarium had begun to badly overheat. Knowing that the Brewery had helped
the National Lobster Hatchery overcome similar problems a few years earlier by
installing vital beer-chilling systems, the SOS call was made.
responded by sending along their Technical Services Manager who not only installed
the chilling equipment but who also announced that the Brewery would not be taking
this equipment back leaving it as a donated item for the use of the Aquarium.
A few weeks earlier Sue
and I had made our first visit to the Falmouth Aquarium. We were looking for a
modern building but found 23 Church Street (which lies in the main shopping area
behind the harbour) to be a four-storey Georgian House. As we entered the premises,
the young lady manning the entrance kiosk told us that before the Aquarium exhibits
were put into place the floor had to be specially strengthened to take their full
By the time we left both of us were very impressed by this small
Public Aquarium and Sue was left in no doubt that this was one, if not the, most
lovingly cared for Public Aquarium that we have had the pleasure of visiting during
The first floor
of a coral reef' display
some fantastic quality tropical marine fish to view.
you will find nine themed tropical marine aquariums displaying fish and various
aquatic creatures large and small. My favourite was the 'Anatomy of a coral reef'
that is a stunning display of living corals complete with some of the highest
quality fish I have ever seen. The Lionfish display uses blue lighting that captures
the colours and moods of these amazing predators to their full advantage. In comparison,
the Black and Green seahorses looked so dainty but this was a little deceptive
as they showed a beautiful Firefish Goby that they were the creatures in charge.
Lionfish showing full colours under strong blue lighting
of the displays have excellent information boards and this was especially true
of the one containing Dragon Moray Eels. I learned much I didn't know about these
Dragon Moray Eel display.
The second floor
area is home to four large native marine exhibits. What struck us immediately
was that these exhibits are not over-stocked, giving the various fish and crustaceans
plenty of space to move around in comfort.
Crabs were very active.
The first display
features a Yellow-Finned Black Bullhead that has Prawns for company. The second
features five large Crabs in the company of Ling and a Sea Scorpion. The third
features a shoal of Mullet that have a large Blue Lobster for company. Wrasse
occupy the final exhibit on this floor.
Part of the Mullet shoal.
of the beautiful Wrasse
The third floor
Here is a very mixed
display of 'treasures of the sea' including various shells and a grand collection
of aquatic fossils.
The fourth floor
This is an interactive area where
you can obtain a whole wealth of information not only about the sea life around
Falmouth but also from around the World. Sue says that this area puts the educational
facilities at some of our larger Public Aquariums to shame.
Not a criticism,
but a surprise, that no mention of the Falmouth Sea Monster is made but you cannot
If you are in the Falmouth area then this
is a 'must visit' for all fishkeepers. A beautiful small Public Aquarium with
all the signs that somebody, with a great love of tropical marines, has taken
this from hobby to visitor attraction level.