Marine Mums!

Tynemouth’s Blue Reef Aquarium is paying tribute to some of the marine world’s most magnificent mums this weekend (March 9th – 10th).

The event is part of the North Tyneside attraction’s Mother’s Day celebrations and, to coincide with the occasion, the aquarium’s freshwater convict cichlids have given birth to dozens of babies.

Both mum and dad have a key role in looking after the babies; protecting them from would-be predators and gathering them up in their mouths and returning to the safety of their cave-home at the sign of danger.

Themed talks and feeding demonstrations throughout the weekend will showcase maternal instincts throughout the natural world – from attentive amphibians to caring cephalopods!

Blue Reef‘s Anna Pellegrino said: “Mother’s Day is always a particularly popular time for families to visit the aquarium and we thought it would add to the celebration of motherhood by highlighting some of the aquatic world’s most loving mothers.

“The convict cichlids are a great example of parental care as they remain together as a couple to look after the babies until they are big enough to gfend for themselves,” she added.

There are numerous other examples of strong maternal instincts among the marine world.

Mother stingrays are pregnant for a year before giving birth to up to 10 live young.

Octopus make extremely dedicated mothers – protecting their eggs with their lives. They are so committed to the survival of their young that they stop feeding and will die soon after the eggs hatch.

One of the marine world’s best mums is actually a dad! Seahorses are virtually unique in the animal world in that it is the male rather than the female who carries the eggs and gives birth to live young.

They are able to do this because of a specially adapted brood pouch on their abdomen.

Issued by the Blue Reef Aquarium. For more information please contact Anna Pellegrino on 0191 258 1031.