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The Tropical Pavilion
Sail to the warmest seas on earth !
Experience a wonderful journey into warm oceans and seas in the Tropical Pavilion. Suggestive of ideal holidays or paradise on earth, the tropical belt extends on both sides of the Equator, including all waters where the temperature remains above 20°C at all times. Comprising a total of 1700m3 of aquariums, the Tropical Pavilion illustrates the wide diversity of marine organisms, from sharks to live corals, not to mention numerous species of colorful fishes and invertebrates.
The shark tank
A number of different species share the 1000 m3 shark tank (17m in diameter) : black tip and whitetip reef sharks, sand tiger shark, saw fish. Recreating part of a French Polynesian atoll, this aquarium can be viewed from four different angles. A glass diving platform, for up to 40 people at a time, slowly descends into a grotto that opens onto the lagoon.
One-of-a-kind : A “wall” of living corals
The marine biodiversity of New Caledonia and the Great Barrier Reef in Australia is represented by 60 different species of live corals, both hard and soft, covering the whole of the 13m-long aquarium. The corals, some of which have grown from cuttings, can proliferate by colonising their surroundings thanks to the impeccable purity of the water, the high intensity of light and the quality of the light spectrum.
The Indian ocean area
In a large 20m-long 300m3 aquarium, visitors can discover fauna from the Indian Ocean reef : butterflyfish, angelfish, parrotfish, batfish, damselfish, surgeonfish, wrasse, etc.
Adaptations specific to reef species.
Parading or hiding, competitive or group interactions, etc. Thousands of years of evolution have led reef fishes to develop many strategies to ensure the survival of their species and their continuing diversity. In small aquariums, discover the clownfish and its anemone home, lionfish and their formidable venimous stripes, and the "ferocious" moray eels having their teeth cleaned by slender shrimp.
The secrets of the Red Sea
A space entirely dedicated to children housed in a vast forum. Through a gap in the reef, they will discover the lagoon. Inside, they can explore the secrets of corals via a variety of media : videos, exhibitions, touchscreen computers and models enable them to learn about this unique habitat whilst having fun.
Endemism and the evolution of species
Within the area dedicated to the Caribbean, a large 180m3 aquarium and two smaller ones introduce endemism, a phenomenon that characterises species (both flora and fauna) for which very slow evolution occurred in a restricted geographical area.
Where land and sea meet, the mangrove stretches across mudflats, and the mangrove trees, typical of these marshy tropical shores, are predominant. The mangrove tree roots are home to numerous species. In a 100m3 tank, stunning moonfish swim around the intricate mesh of mangrove tree roots.
The Tropical greenhouse
The 400m2 greenhouse recreates a typical Caribbean forest, with, on the tree trunks, epiphytes such as orchids and bromeliads. Luxurious vegetation, with explosions of life, this tropical greenhouse comprises a 10m3 freshwater aquarium illustrating life in a section of the Amazon River featuring discus, neons, tetras, etc.
Did you know that... ?
The most dangerous animals are not those we might expect.
Around twenty people are killed each year by sharks, and 50 000 by snakes. On the other hand, Man kills over 60 million sharks every year.
How do corals reproduce ?
Some corals are both male and female. They release tiny reproductive cells into the water which, when they meet, produce an egg which in turn will transform into a small swimming larvae. These larvae become attached to the sea floor and from them a new coral is born.
If branches of the coral break off during storms, they are dispersed and new colonies can grow from these cuttings.
Does the Amazon rainforest produce most of the oxygen on the planet ?
No ! The seas and oceans provide more than 50 % of our atmosphere’s oxygen. The Amazon Rainforest is not the all-important oxygen source that many claim, as a primary tropical rainforest consumes just as much oxygen as it produces. On the other hand, the Amazon Rainforest must be preserved for its biodiversity. The primary tropical rainforests, just as the coral reefs, are vast reservoirs of biodiversity and many species are still waiting to be discovered.
These fragile environments are deeply affected by Man’s actions. They must be protected, restored whenever possible, and managed in a sustainable way so as not to endanger future generations.