Aquarium auctioning three beluga whales for a chance to name

Associated Press

Connecticut Aquarium plans to auction off the chance to name three out of five Recently arrived beluga whale To raise funds for their care and offset the cost of shipping them from Canada.

Stephen Korn, president and chief executive officer, said the Sea Research Foundation will hold a fund-raising auction on August 19 at the Mystic Aquarium, which operates in collaboration with New York-based auction house Garnseys. ..

“Three whales have acquired what we call stage names and will be called by those names in the future,” he said. “We have named other animals in the past, but people are very excited about the opportunity. It really makes animals part of the community and the community has the experience of welcoming them to new animals. I feel it is part of it. “

The aquarium wants to raise $ 4 million at the auction. This includes donated art, perhaps boats and vintage cars, and unique experiences such as educational diving trips with scientists to places such as the Northeast Undersea Canyon and Seamount Marine National Monument. Atlantic, Coan said.

He said the aquarium would cost about $ 5 million a year to care for beluga whales. This includes approximately $ 250,000 annually for feeding each animal and caring for a veterinarian, as well as costs associated with habitat management and research.

The Foundation also spent millions of dollars last month Transport of whales Coan said he used custom-made stretchers and special tanks onboard C-130 cargo planes from his former home in MarineLand, Niagara Falls, Ontario.

The Mystic Aquarium, which specializes in beluga whale research, has spent months trying to secure the necessary approvals from both countries and overcome the challenges. From some animal rights groups I was against the move.

The auction announcement will take place on the same day that the whales, along with three existing whales (Kera, Juno and Natasha), are fully integrated into the main part of the aquarium’s 750,000 gallon beluga habitat.

Coan said all whales were acclimatized and in good health, but needed treatment for existing gastrointestinal problems.

Junho has been very welcome to communicate with them over the past five weeks, overcoming the barriers that separated them, Coan said. Natasha didn’t seem to be aware of the new arrival, she seemed a little surprised at the integration, and Kero seemed to be “slightly suffering at first” as she shared her space.

“It’s a pretty sight because they’re getting to know each other now,” he said.

New arrivals will soon begin training through aggressive enhancements (fish, tongue rubbing, or fun toys to play with) to voluntarily support the study. They are used as a baseline for comparison with wild beluga whales when studying health, the immune system, etc.

Coan said there are guidelines on what allows aquariums to name whales. For example, company names and offensive names are off limits.

The other two whales will get their names from the general public through a contest scheduled to be held by the aquarium starting in August, including one that will be part of an educational program for school children in the state.

Aquarium auctioning three beluga whales for a chance to name

Source link Aquarium auctioning three beluga whales for a chance to name

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