In Otter News: Diving inside the Isle Royale exhibit

In Otter News: Diving inside the Isle Royale Exhibit

The exhibit focuses on Lake Superior. There are four different species of trout, and five types of lake sturgeon.

The Isle Royale exhibit has a 85,000 gallon tank which is filled with all the local fish of Lake Superior, but you may see more than fish when you visit. You may also be able to spot a scuba diver.

“It’s like being in a snow globe. It’s much different than diving out in Lake Superior or anything like that, because you have these open acrylic walls so everyone can see you.” Part of Danielle Tikalsky’s job is to scuba dive. “But it’s absolutely silent. All you hear the bubbles moving around. So when you’re down there, it’s just you in the fish. You can almost forget that people can see you because it’s so enclosed.”

Diving is huge part of how the Great Lake’s Aquarium takes care of the animals. When it comes to feeding the sturgeon in the Isle Royale exhibit, it’s necessary. They used a targeted feeding method.

“We actually have to get down to the bottom and feed by hand to those sturgeon. Those sturgeon have learned that scuba divers are the targets. So they come to us, we give them the food. That’s a reward for that behavior,” Danielle tells us. “Not only are we feeding, but we’re also checking up on those animals”

The trout, on the other hand, use broadcast feeding- similar to what you’d do with your fish tank at home.