Japanese aquarium urges public to video-chat eels who are forgetting humans exist (Guardian)

Sensitive creatures are starting to hide when keepers walk past, as a result of the lack of visitors.

When the garden eels at a Tokyo aquarium remove their heads from the sand, they are usually confronted by pairs of human eyes staring back at them through the glass.

But like other animals around the world, the eels at Sumida Aquarium are finding their environment transformed by the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.

They also appear to be forgetting what humans look like. Concerned that the garden eels – so named because their grass-like appearance when, en masse, they poke their heads out of the seabed – could come to see visitors as a threat, the aquarium is asking people to get in touch in the form of a calming video calls.

The aquarium, housed in Tokyo Skytree – Japan’s tallest structure – has been closed since the start of March and its garden eels have become used to a largely human-free environment.

But the aquarium said the “unprecedented situation” had had put the eels and other creatures ill at ease…

To read the entire article from The Guardian, click https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/01/japanese-aquarium-urges-public-to-video-chat-eels-who-are-forgetting-humans-exist


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