A Nurse Shark called Bruiser has outgrown his theme-park home and is destined for roomier premises at Weymouth Sea Life Park…arriving on Wednesday, July 14th.
Bruiser has been a star attraction for two-and-a-half years at the new Chessington Sea Life Centre, but has grown three feet in that time and now struggles to manoeuvre through the rock and coral theming.
“If he were allowed to grow any bigger he would soon be demolishing the theming just with his sheer weight and bulk,” said Weymouth displays supervisor Fiona Smith.
Bruiser is a cheeky character who likes to muscle in at feeding time, so his keepers don’t anticipate any difficulty steering him over a stretcher to lift him from the tank at Chessington.
“Then he’ll be straight into a large transport tank in the back of a waiting truck and a drive down to Weymouth to repeat the whole process in reverse,” said Fiona.
Bruiser will be joining resident black-tipped reef sharks, a beautiful zebra shark and Florida green turtles in a much bigger tropical ocean tank at Weymouth.
“He will soon be the biggest shark we’ve ever had,” said Fiona. “We’re excited about his arrival and sure he will enjoy life in his more spacious new surrounds.”
Nurse sharks are a type of ‘carpet shark’ – so called for their fondness for lying motionless on the seabed using their powerful neck muscles to pump water through their gills.
Though not commercially fished, they are sometimes taken for their tough leathery skin, for the oil from their livers and for their flesh, which is usually eaten raw and salted.