An Enquirer.com Special Section FRIDAY, MAY 14, 1999
Hours, prices, and other information were current at time of publication and may have changed.

shark

THE AQUARIUM
- Introduction
- Going there
- The murals
- The music
- Shop and Eat
- Beginnings

THE EXHIBITS

- World Rivers
- Shore Gallery
- Touch Pool
- Bizarre & Beautiful
- Dangerous & Deadly
- Riverbank
- 'Gator Bayou
-Amazon Rain Forest
- Coral Reef
- Jellyfish Gallery
- Kingdom of Penguins
- Ray Nursery
- Repopulation
- Surrounded by Sharks

THE STAFF

- Staff and keepers
Oceanic Adventures Newport Aquarium] [Building image]
Jellyfish Gallery
Six species of spectacular, fragile jellyfish are framed in a Victorian setting

        The decor is elegant and the music soft in the Victorian-themed Jellyfish Gallery. The serene setting was designed with these gelatinous sea creatures in mind.

        Six species of jellyfish float and drift in tanks called kreisels. They were engineered to make them feel just as they would at sea. Corners were rounded and a special intake system installed that will keep the fish suspended. If the water is too strong, the fragile fish will bounce or may get stuck in the mechanics.

        Next to each display is a picture of the jellyfish in a gold, ornately decorated frame. Even the lights above the frames look Victorian.

        In the center of the room is a pink settee that allows visitors to sit in the tranquil room and study the animals' movements.

        Above the settee is a pink and white chandelier designed by Skyline of Chicago. It looks like a huge jellyfish.

        A large red bell is in the center with smaller bells branching off below. Thin red, pink and clear tubes hang from the bottom of each bell.

Origins
        Moon Jellies drift in waters from Greenland to the West Indies and in the Atlantic Ocean. West Coast Sea Nettles are found largely off the coasts of Oregon and California. Elegant Jellies are found in coastal waters from the Arctic to Cape Cod. Umbrella Jellyfishes swim in cool northern oceans. Lion's Mane Jellyfish float in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Purple Jellyfish live in the warm waters of North and South America. Comb Jellies are found all over the world.

Costs
        The kreisels (tanks) cost $70,000. The largest one, which weighs 1,400 pounds, cost $18,000.

What fish eat
       

        Comb Jellyfish have been known to eat other members of their phylum and large quantities of oyster larvae. Other jellyfishes survive on a steady diet of algae and plankton.

How big do they get?
        Sea Nettles can grow to 5 inches. Moon Jellies will reach 13 inches. The Umbrella Jellyfish will only reach 1 inch. Elegant and Purple Jellyfish can be a mere 4 inches long. Comb Jellies might get to 6 inches. The Lion's Mane Jellyfish is the largest reaching maximum lengths of 24 inches.

What you don't see
        The aquarium's jellyfish have a special diet of brine shrimp, which keepers must hatch. Each day they open enough cans of shrimp eggs to feed the jellyfish and place the eggs in water. Within 18 to 24 hours the eggs hatch. Keepers add a special vitamin food, which is eaten by the shrimp. One day later they're ready to be fed to the jellyfish, and the process begins all over again.

Exhibit by the numbers
        6 species

        100 feet is how far Lion's Mane Jellyfish tentacles extend

        150 tentacles on a typical Lion's Mane Jellyfish

        8 tentacles on a Purple Jellyfish

        95 percent of a jellyfish's body is water

        700 pounds is the weight of the chandelier

Stars of the Tank
        West Coast Sea Nettle: The West Coast Sea Nettle uses a sting similar to that of a bee for defense. Sea Nettles are known to eat Comb Jellyfishes, which eat oyster larvae in large quantities. Thus, those in the oyster industry appreciate Sea Nettles.

        Comb Jelly: The Comb Jelly looks like a space ship with green and pink lights covering its warty body. It is also known to be cannibalistic and eat oyster larvae.

        Elegant Jelly: The Elegant Jelly uses rapid pulsing and slow drifting motions to swim at depths of 200-300 feet.

        Moon Jelly: Packing one of the least venomous stinging punches of the jellyfishes, the Moon Jelly is usually found in shallow water just off shore. Its saucer-like body and short, fringe-like tentacles are those most commonly seen washed up on beaches.



The Tristate is Goin' Fishin'
Going to the Aquarium
Murals bring seascapes to life
Music sets the mood for 16 exhibits
Shop, eat and watch a movie
The making of an aquarium
World Rivers
Shore Gallery
Touch Pool
Bizarre & Beautiful
Dangerous & Deadly
Riverbank
'Gator Bayou
Amazon Rain Forest
Coral Reef
- Jellyfish Gallery
Kingdom of Penguins
Ray Nursery
Repopulation
Surrounded by Sharks
Meet the staff and keepers

Copyright 1999 The Cincinnati Enquirer, a Gannett Co. Inc. newspaper.
Use of this site signifies agreement to terms of service updated 2/28/98.