New displays unveiled as Macduff Marine Aquarium prepares to reopen

As Macduff Marine Aquarium prepares to reopen to the public on Monday (April 26), staff are putting finishing touches to new displays highlighting the marine habitats of the Moray Firth and some of the challenges facing our oceans.

By Kevin McRoberts
Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 6:00 am
The aquarium has created new, exciting and interactive displays to entertain and educate visitors.
The aquarium has created new, exciting and interactive displays to entertain and educate visitors.

At the end of 2020, the aquarium was awarded grants by Aberdeenshire Council and the NESFLAG Coastal Communities Challenge Fund (CCCF) to improve the visual interpretation that supports the habitat-themed exhibits.

There was also support from integrated utilities company TAQA to develop a new display on the issue of plastics in our seas, and additional support provided by the Friends of Macduff Marine Aquarium and Scottish Water.

The aquarium’s diverse displays of native marine life form the backbone of the visitor experience, but as visitors move through the exhibit spaces, they can gain information about the Moray Firth’s marine habitats from interpretation panels on the aquarium walls.

Much of the original interpretation had been in place for over 20 years and it needed an upgrade to make the information more accessible and relevant.

Over the past three months, aquarium staff have been working with exhibit design specialists to produce bright, eye-catching display panels that bring the information to life for visitors making their way from exhibits featuring the coastal habitats, out to the kelp reef and beyond to the sandy seabed.

Aquarium manager Claire Matthews, said: “We feel like we’re kicking off the aquarium’s 25th year with a new lease of life. Our new wall displays are vibrant and contemporary and include interactive and tactile features that will appeal especially to our younger visitors."

Plastics in the ocean have become a huge global issue and one that TAQA is keen to help tackle by raising public awareness of how we can all make a difference.

Robbie Jones, Senior Environmental Advisor at TAQA, said: “It is important that as a company and as individuals, we respect, protect and understand the natural environment and this engaging new display helps promote this to a wide audience.

The new displays will be revealed during a live Facebook event at 2pm this Thursday (April 22).