After much planning and years of preparation, West Coast Aquatic opened its aquarium and stewardship centre at Harbour Quay on the weekend.
The centre is sure to be a draw for tourists, and students in the Alberni Valley will benefit too from more regular exposure to the Valley’s marine eco-systems.
It is also a benefit to Harbour Quay, one of the Valley’s best tourist attractions.
At a time when other aquariums in North America are getting away from entertainment shows — like killer whale shows at Sea World — it is important to note that the touch tanks and other tanks will be rotated on a regular basis.
Environmentally, it is important to have teaching tools for the Alberni Valley’s youth. Bringing the ocean and intertidal zones to people’s fingertips is an important learning experience—but not at the expense of the creatures themselves.