Rock pools for Macduff

Rock pool for Macduff

ATL recently completed the installation of new rock pools for Macduff marine aquarium

Our team secured the project to upgrade the rock pools for Macduff Marine Aquarium, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. A substantial grant of £33,000 from the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund and North East Scotland Fisheries Local Action Group was secured. ATL  were delighted to be awarded the contract to modernise the rock pool area and provide a display allowing the animals to be more appropriately viewed. The new tanks needed to provide a more interactive experience linking all the aquariums visitors to the aquarium staff during the popular talks sessions.

The original tanks were very small and due to their heavy method of construction, difficult to maintain and show off typical rock pool beasties.

Rock pools for Macduff

The original rock pools were in need of an update

Macduff aquarium displays officer Chris Rowe explained that the previous 12-year-old concrete tanks were “crumbling” and causing operational and husbandry issues and said he was delighted to be involved in the design of a new tank. Working closely with the ATL team allowed us the flexibility to create exactly what we wanted. 

He added: “We’ve now got an environment that’s safe for the animals where they don’t have to come out of the water as often so people can still enjoy it.”

The original tanks occupied a tight exhibition space on the main visitor route. The remit was not only to make better use of this space but also produce a display that allowed better flow of visitors and allowing all round access. A site visit was arranged and after much deliberation a shape of display was agreed. It was decided that the tank should be curved to provide as many viewing opportunities as possible.

The tank design was finally agreed and ATL’s techicians set about building bespoke these bespoke rock pools for Macduff.

Rock pools for macduff

The rock pools for Macduff in progress at ATL

The rock pools display was entirely prefabricated offsite in our work shop here in Weymouth. The curved acrylic viewing panels and a ‘head in’ viewing dome was added to providing a quirky underwater view were also formed here on site and fitted together with all internal tank plumbing. Offsite production offers many advantages including minimising site installation periods and therefore being less disruptive for attraction operators. A .

The in tank decor and theming was produced by our creative team to closely replicate the local rock strata seen all around Macduff aquarium.

Rock pool for Macduff

Richie creating the basis of the rock work from the brief

The shape of the rocks was carefully considered together with the on site curatorial team to create various shallow and deeper areas to allow animals to be rested.

Rock pools for Macduff

Creating shallow pools in the rock work allows animals to be rested

Once the rock pools for Macduff were delivered to site these were installed into location. ATLs creative team arrived on site and completed the in and out of tank theming leaving behind a new seamless rock pool for Macduff aquarium visitors to enjoy.

Rock pool for Macduff

Rock pool nearing completion

 

Rock pool for Macduff

ATL theming nearing completion

ATL theming nearing completion

In addition to the rock pools for Macduff we also provided two new stand alone cylinder displays. These tanks provide improved viewing potential for more delicate animals such as living shark egg cases.

Rock pool for Macduff project

ATL ‘eggs’ cylinder display in action

Macduff marine aquarium recently launched their new rock pool zone and everyones agrees that its a major improvement.

Rock pools for Macduff

Adults as well and children admire the views

 

Rock pool for Macduff

Aquarium staff interact with young visitors

 

Rock pool for Macduff

ATL dome provides a fun ‘head in’ view

 

Rock pool for Macduff

Children love interacting with the new rock pool

ATL has long been established with Macduff Marine aquarium. Our team built the original tanks in 1996 and its a great pleasure to continue this special relationship over two decades later. For more details take a look at the Macduff’s new touch pools

 

 

 

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