Toledo Zoo earns federal grant for historic aquarium renovations - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Toledo Zoo earns federal grant for historic aquarium renovations

Aerial view of the planned touch tanks in the Toledo Zoo's aquarium. (Source: Toledo Zoo) Aerial view of the planned touch tanks in the Toledo Zoo's aquarium. (Source: Toledo Zoo)
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TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

The Institute of Museum and Library Services has awarded the Toledo Zoo a $145,738 grant for renovations to the zoo's historic aquarium, scheduled to reopen in 2015.

"We're honored that the Institute of Museum and Library Services has awarded us this grant," said Jeff Sailer, the zoo's executive director. "It supports our goals of providing top-quality, consistent care for our aquarium animals, while inspiring visitors to care for animals and conserve the natural world."

The grant will help fund life support systems for the zoo's interactive touch tanks: one for sharks and stingrays, and the other for invertebrates, like sea stars and sea cucumbers. These exhibits provide multi-sensory experiences that connect people with animals, while the life support systems maintain proper water temperature, oxygen concentration and other factors that ensure optimal animal care.

The touch tank exhibits are part of significant renovations to the historic aquarium, a Works Progress Administration project constructed during the 1930s. When it opened in May 1939, it was the largest freshwater aquarium in the world.

Community donations are welcome for the aquarium renovations and for Penguin Beach, a new African penguin exhibit that is scheduled to open in May 2014.

The aquarium is scheduled to reopen in the first half of 2015.

Read more on the Toledo Zoo's aquarium:

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