The world’s largest private jellyfish tank has been installed in Britain after a restaurateur forked out £50,000 on the aquarium containing beautiful jellies imported from Thailand.
The 4,000 litre aquarium contains 150 ‘moon’ jellyfish of all sizes flown over 6,000 miles from Thailand and must be hand fed twice every day with live baby brine shrimp.
Installed at Thai restaurant ChaoBaby in Manchester, the tank is the largest private jellyfish aquarium in the world.
It measures 4.5m (11.5ft) long by 1.7m (4.9ft) high by 0.5m (1.6ft) deep and is rectangular – but circular inside.
The construction ensures the delicate jellyfish are suspended in a circular current provided by two powerful chillers which keep the tank at precisely 17 degrees Celsius.
Roland Marcelin-Horne, director of Aquarium Architecture which built the tank, revealed that finished aquarium is a ”real show stopper”.
He said: ”This was always going to be an exciting and challenging project, given the time scales and the fact that there’s nothing else quite like it.
”We have developed something we are all truly proud of. These are incredibly delicate creatures, needing careful attention.
”There are only three main companies in the world who make jellyfish tanks so we know for a fact that it’s the biggest private one ever built.
”Unlike fish that swim around, jellyfish have to be kept in suspension and we had to engineer the tank so that it was circular inside with a current.
”It is a real show stopper and there’s nothing like that out there especially in terms of the height of the tank which makes it imposing to look at it.”
The jellyfish tank took four weeks to design and build before it was installed in the restaurant earlier this month.
The 40mm thick acrylic walls of the tank were pressed and assembled in America before being flown to Britain.
Although the aquarium appears to be rectangular from the outside the jellyfish are contained within a circular space within.
This sphere, which is notoriously difficult to manufacture, enables the jellyfish to float in suspension, as they would in their natural habitat.
The aquarium is fitted with a bespoke lighting system which changes colour during the day and is linked to the restaurant’s own lights.
The ChaoBaby restaurant is part of the Chaophraya chain, which has now commissioned a second tank for another restaurant in Manchester.
They are also planning to build a 10m long shark tank for the opening of another planned restaurant.
* Aurelia aurita (moon jelly, moon jellyfish, common jellyfish, saucer jelly) are translucent, usually about 25-40 cm across and feeds on medusae, plankton and mollusks.
The jellyfish is capable of limited motion, but primarily drifts with the current even when it is swimming.