8 september, 2011 14:59  

After touring the Far Eastern Federal University, Vladimir Putin visits the construction site of the Primorye Oceanarium


“The Oceanarium is part of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS). I would love it if the academy and the university would work on this project together,” the prime minister said during his visit to the construction site.

Andrei Andrianov, Head of the Marine Biology Institute of the RAS Far Eastern branch, told the premier that the Oceanarium will mainly serve as a facility for research and training higher education students but everyone will be able to come and see ocean species. “Also, we have conceived a big project in cooperation with the university – to create a biotechnology park for breeding valuable fish and invertebrate species, and selecting new objects for the aquaculture,” Andrianov said.

“Will you have fish species from various regions of the world?” Mr Putin asked. The researcher explained that the Oceanarium will become home to species from all five oceans but that means different marine environments are needed. The complex will comprise 700 pools, including 200 big tanks. The largest aquarium will contain 7,000 cubic metres of water. “The giant reservoir will be used for the largest marine species such as sharks and white whales,” the researcher said. “The sharks are going to eat them all,” the prime minister laughed and asked if there were any oceanaria larger than the one in Primorye. Mr Andrianov said the largest oceanaria were open-air structures built in hot climates, which would be difficult to replicate in Russia’s Far East.

The researcher added that the main building was a unique shell-like facility located near the bay. “I know because I have chosen it myself,” noted Mr Putin, who approved the project’s final version.

Mr Andrianov briefly outlined some of the future projects related to the Oceanarium, such as marine therapy for children that involves interaction with dolphins and other sea animals, the Tropical Rainforest and the Tropical Sea and Corals projects.

The researcher presented Mr Putin with a big photograph of a white whale and a copy of a documentary about the underwater world filmed for students and researchers.