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Friday, Aug. 5, 2011

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New digs: Finless porpoises are among the special residents at Miyajima Public Aquarium. MIYAJIMA PUBLIC AQUARIUM

Hiroshima revamps its aquarium

Staff writer

Plenty of rare marine species will debut at the re-opening of Hiroshima's Miyajima Aquarium after three years of renovations.

Aquarium spokespeople hope the new environment will be a more soothing and enjoyable experience. Visitors are now able to have more interaction with the animals, including being able to play with the penguins and some other sea creatures in a spacious rock pool.

Live shows will be held throughout the day featuring sea lions, Japanese river otters, and even archerfish, which shoot down their insect prey with pinpoint-accurate streams of water shot from their mouths. The aquarium's 50 tanks house some 350 species and more than 13,000 specimens. These include finless porpoises from Japan and Humboldt penguins from South America, both of which are protected species. Other animals include sharks, eels and piranhas.

Miyajima Aquarium is located 15 minutes from Miyajima Port on Miyajima Island, Hiroshima Prefecture. The aquarium is open from 9 a.m. till 5 p.m. (reception closes at 4 p.m.). For more information, visit www.miyajima-aqua.jp.

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