Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Birch Aquarium at Scripps Unveils Live HD Web Cam of its Two-Story Kelp Forest
Scripps Institution of Oceanography / University of California, San DiegoExplore the amazing kelp forest off La Jolla's coast without leaving your home or office. Birch Aquarium at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego, announces a new, live high-def web cam featuring the aquarium's two-story kelp forest tank.
With a diver's-eye view, discover leopard sharks, garibaldi, eels, barracuda, giant sea bass and more within the 70,000-gallon tank. De-stress to the swaying of towering kelp. Tune in during our weekly dive shows to watch divers feed the animals and discuss the kelp forest's crucial role in the health of the ocean. Dive shows take place at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2 p.m. on Saturdays and 10:30 a.m. on Sundays.
Kelp forests are considered one of the most diverse and dynamic ecosystems on Earth, supporting thousands of species. Birch Aquarium's kelp forest - one of only a handful displayed at public science centers worldwide - features more than 175 fish and invertebrates, representing 35 species. Keep an eye out for the 225-pound, 25-year-old giant sea bass as well as three species of sharks and the fiery-orange garibaldi, California's state marine fish.
The Kelp Tank Dive Show is held Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Visit the live kelp cam at the Birch Aquarium website. The camera is hosted by HD Relay.
Kelp Tank Facts
· Giant kelp is one of the world's fastest growing plants and can reach as high as 300 feet in a single year.
· We use kelp every day in items such as toothpaste, chocolate milk, shaving cream and beer.
· The acrylic used in Birch Aquarium's kelp forest tank is 10 inches thick, and the window consists of two large pieces fused together.
· A special wave machine keeps Birch Aquarium's kelp forest tank in constant motion so the kelp can absorb enough nutrients to grow and thrive.
· The kelp forest tank requires weekly underwater grooming by divers who trim the plants, vacuum up waste and rake the sand.
About Birch Aquarium at Scripps
Birch Aquarium at Scripps is the public exploration center for the world-renowned Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. Perched on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the aquarium features more than 60 habitats of fish and invertebrates from the cold waters of the Pacific Northwest to the tropical waters of Mexico and the Caribbean. An interactive museum showcases research discoveries by Scripps scientists on climate, earth and ocean science. Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, Birch Aquarium has an annual attendance of more than 415,000, including 45,000 school children.
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Note to broadcast and cable producers: University of California, San Diego provides an on-campus satellite uplink facility for live or pre-recorded television interviews. Please phone or e-mail the media contact listed above to arrange an interview.
Scripps Institution of Oceanography, at University of California, San Diego, is one of the oldest, largest and most important centers for global science research and education in the world. Now in its second century of discovery, the scientific scope of the institution has grown to include biological, physical, chemical, geological, geophysical and atmospheric studies of the earth as a system. Hundreds of research programs covering a wide range of scientific areas are under way today in 65 countries. The institution has a staff of about 1,300, and annual expenditures of approximately $155 million from federal, state and private sources. Scripps operates one of the largest U.S. academic fleets with four oceanographic research ships and one research platform for worldwide exploration.
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