QUALITY ASSURANCE

The Océarium du Croisic is committed to a quality assurance approach that includes almost 200 criteria. The aim of the approach is to :

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  • Ensure you receive a warm welcome
  • Ensure our staff are attentive to your needs
  • Offer assistance in foreign languages
  • Offer personalized services and provide clear and accurate information
  • Guarantee comfort and cleanliness
  • Listen to your views
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FROM THE SEA TO THE AQUARIUM:
HOW THE OCEARIUM WORKS ?

1,700 cubic metres of natural seawater: this is the total volume held by the aquarium's installations.
This vital element for any aquatic organism is pumped up 400 metres from where the Océarium stands.

First the water is stored, then decanted into two tanks measuring 200 cubic metres. It is then filtered, using two techniques:

  • mechanical filtration
  • sand filtration of the type used by swimming pools.
  • The seawater is regularly monitored. The main parameters for measuring the 'quality' of the seawater are its salinity, pH, and levels of dissolved nitrates and oxygen. Thanks to its special geographical position, Le Croisic peninsula, which penetrates 5 km into the sea, has very good quality water.

The 55 saltwater aquariums on display to the public are simply the visible part of a complex mechanism. The filtration room, the lifeline of the aquariums, is in the basement. It is here that the seawater is oxygenated and cleaned, and where its temperature is regulated.

The water in the aquariums is partially renewed, at around 5% a day. All the 'Atlantic' area aquariums are connected to a heat exchanger and a cooling unit so their temperature can be maintained at 16 degrees Celsius. For the tropical area tanks, a gas boiler and a heat pump maintain the water at 25 degrees Celsius. Ultraviolet light is used to sterilise the tanks.

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THE QUARANTINE ROOM

This is the first place that new residents of Le Croisic aquarium are taken: here they are monitored, looked after and fed.
In the quarantine room, the aquarium keepers observe the animals, which have come from a natural environment, in their new environment, and administer any treatments or special care that may be required.

Antibiotic treatments are given to those fish which have been most damaged in the fishing process, in order to regenerate their skin and scales. For minor injuries, milder treatments are administered, such as fresh water or cold temperatures.

Depending on the species and the individual's state of health, it takes between ten days and two months for the fish to acclimatise.

Once acclimatised, the new residents are moved into their aquariums, whose interiors are designed to mimic the ecosystems the fish were used to in their natural environment.

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FOOD

The residents of Le Croisic's aquarium are fed five times a week. They are given a fresh and balanced diet of shellfish, crabs, fish, shrimps, cuttlefish and plankton.

For the tunnel, it is a diver who is given the delicate task of feeding the fish, one by one, by hand.

A few special cases:

  • The octopuses and cuttlefish are fed daily with crabs. These animals actually have a beak in their mouth, which they use to shell the crab so they only eat its meat. Once they have had their fill, they spit out the empty carapace.
  • The Australian sharks are fed twice a week with pieces of fish (conger, whiting, mackerel ...), cuttlefish or squid. The food is placed on the end of a stick, which is wielded from the surface in order to distribute the food evenly among the individual sharks. And yes, they only eat twice a week because their digestion is slow and a shark only eats 2% of its body weight in a week... so, an animal weighing a hundred kilos consumes only 2 kg of food! So, at the Océarium, although the sharks are the biggest animals, they actually eat the least! By contrast, the animals that eat the most are the penguins as they are fed three times a day with small oily fish (sardines, sprats and anchovies). Their food is given to them by hand but is also placed directly in their pool, where they like to race each other to catch as many fish as possible!
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A STRONG PARTNERSHIP WITH THE FISHERMEN FROM LE CROISIC AND THE REGION

Most of the species exhibited in the Océarium's Atlantic area are supplied by local fishermen, or sometimes by fishermen from neighbouring harbours.
As soon as the seafarers have caught a specimen of interest, they call the Océarium's team of keepers.
In no time at all, the animals are transferred to the Océarium's quarantine tanks, where they are checked for parasites for example.

They are then either moved to the display tanks or given in exchange to other aquariums in France or Europe that are not lucky enough to have this kind of special relationship with their local fishermen.

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