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OCEAN PARK WILL TEMPORARILY REMOVE CHINESE STURGEONS FROM PUBLIC VIEWING FOLLOWING LOSS OF A FISH

2008-12-12

(Hong Kong – 12 December) One Chinese sturgeon in Ocean Park's Chinese Sturgeon Aquarium died on 3 December. Experts are investigating the cause of death and as a routine procedure, samples will be sent to laboratories for analysis.

The fish had been under observation and treatment for an infection.

Ocean Park immediately notified and conferred with the authorities, including the Mainland's National Aquatic Wildlife Conservation Association, the Yangtze River Fisheries Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Fisheries Sciences, and the Beijing Aquarium.

Last week, two other fish with similar symptoms were also taken out of the Chinese Sturgeon Aquarium as a precaution for observation and medical attention, while the remaining six are being monitored inside the facility, which continued to be open to the public.

Currently, all eight fish are observed to be stable.

Ocean Park plans to move the remaining six fish to a holding pool at a back of house veterinary facility, and temporarily close the Chinese Sturgeon Aquarium to further evaluate and to sanitise the facility. Ocean Park will also take this opportunity to advance a planned campaign to introduce theming for the attraction to reflect the natural habitat of the Chinese sturgeons.

Mainland authorities will come to Hong Kong by the end of the month to offer further expert advice on the matter.

Ocean Park chairman, Dr Allan Zeman, expressed sadness for the death of the Chinese sturgeon. Dr Zeman said he is confident the Park’s team has the skills and dedication to work with the respective Mainland experts to review and address all matters related to the care of these fish.

Mr. Li Yan Liang, Chairman of the National Aquatic Wildlife Conservation Association said, “We are saddened by the news and we will work with Ocean Park to ensure that the Chinese sturgeons will continue to tell the story of aquatic wildlife conservation.”

The fish that died is known as "No. 7." It was a 10 year-old, first generation captive bred fish of 198 cm in length. It arrived at Ocean Park on 29 July 2008, from the breeding centre, Yangtze River Fisheries Research Institute, Xiamen, China.

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About Ocean Park
Ocean Park is Hong Kong’s unique homegrown theme park with a heritage of delivering family fun and fond memories. Since its opening in January 1977 as a non-profit organization, Ocean Park has developed itself to be a world-class attraction connecting people with nature, and recognized for its animal husbandry, research and relationship with the community. Over 90 million people have visited Hong Kong's premier park since its inception and Ocean Park has remained committed to offer adults and children experiences that blend entertainment with education and conservation. Part of the proceeds from the Ocean Park admission tickets and some retail items will go to Ocean Park Conservation Foundation, Hong Kong to support its wildlife conservation projects.