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The Temperate Pavilion
Discover the coasts of Brittany !
The numerous aquariums in the temperate pavilion open windows to the rich Breton flora and fauna: the langoustines' burrow, seals, the rockface with its enormous bass, the Iroise Sea tank with ray, turbot and lobster... An Oceanographic area is dedicated to marine phenomena : tides, currents and waves. The highlight of the visit : feeding the seals and the animals in the touchpool !
The AbyssBox: life under high pressure
It’s a world first: visitors at Océanopolis can observe living deep sea animals. They are kept in two housings under a pressure equivalent to that existing at depths of 1800 to 2000 meters where they usually dwell!
The Seal tank
In an enormous tank with simulated waves and ocean currents, you will find our two harbour seals living amongst the seaweed and invertebrates typical of the ecosystem present at the Molène archipelago. Able to stay underwater for around twenty minutes, these mammals enjoy visits from their keepers throughout the day who feed them to the delight of of the visitors.
The Kelp Forest
In this tank, you will be able to admire a sight which, in Brittany, is usually reserved for divers : France's biggest seaweed forest. Unique in Europe : the kelp nursery. These gigantic seaweed are a great hiding place, store cupboard and breeding site for many fish such as scad, pollack and cuckoo wrasse.
The touch pool
Designed to resemble a marine laboratory, the touch pool is an opportunity for visitors to touch living organisms such as : starfish, sea urchins and scallops. Aquarium staff are on hand throughout the day to present the different marine flora and fauna with the help of video cameras and microscopes.
The Great Mudflats
100m below the surface of the water in southern Brittany are the great mudflats. This is the kingdom of the langoustines, which burrow down into the silt and only emerge early in the morning or after dark. In this aquarium the crustaceans are visible within their burrows dug into the seabed.
The Seagrass Herbarium
On the flat shallow seafloor of our coasts are underwater meadows of flowering plants with long flat leaves, where seahorses, garfish and pipefish hide, camouflaged by the grasses. Sea stikleback use them to build nests to protect their young.
On the sand, dragonets and sand gobies have adopted the same colour as their surroundings for camouflage.
The jellyfish tank
Feared by swimmers, jellyfish (here Aurelia Aurita) are in reality veritable ballerinas, both beautiful and mysterious, and belong to the same family as coral and sea anemones. This species differ from other jellyfish in that they float and swim in open water. A cylindrical aquarium presents these beautiful creatures floating in a gentle current.
Did you know that... ?
The turbot's wandering eye
Like the plaice, the turbot has two rather strange and spectacular characteristics. Both are coloured on just one of their two sides ; that which is visible, but its strangest characteristic is its eye. Just a few days after birth, the larvae begins to flatten and one of its eyes starts to move towards the other. In the end, both of the turbot's eyes become situated on one side of it's body.
The transformation of the wrasse
In the "kelp forest" tank, male and female cuckoo wrasse appear to belong to two separate families. Males are blue and red whereas the younger females are orange with black spots a the base of the dorsal fin. Did you know that cuckoo wrasse change sex over the course of their life ? Born female, they then become male as they age and their colouring changes.
Seahorses, or animal feminism
The famous seahorse, or hippocamus, may be a symbol of a special kind of feminism. Indeed, the males carry the eggs in a pocket on their stomachs. He can thus give birth to 800 young, of which the great majority unfortunately will never reach maturity due to predation.