Waikiki Aquarium Opens Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Exhibit

The exhibit will feature more than 200 fish and coral species.

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A diver checks a coral reef in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. Via NOAA
John Virata

The Waikiki Aquarium in Honolulu, Hawaii announced it will open its Northwestern Hawaiian Islands exhibit to the public August 18, 2011 at 9 a.m. The $300,000 exhibit will feature fish and other marine life found in the most remote islands in the Hawaiian chain. The species to be showcased at the exhibit are native to areas in the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument, the largest conservation area shepherded by the United States.

More than 7,000 marine species, including the endangered Hawaiian Monk Seal and the threatened Hawaiian honu (green sea turtle) call the reefs and beaches found at Papahanaumokuakea home, and the exhibit will showcase a fraction of those animals, 225 fish and 200 coral fragments in a 4,400 gallon marine reef ecosystem. Fish to be showcased include masked angelfish (Genicanthus personatus), Hawaiian Morwongs (Goniistius vittatus kikakapu), Thompson’s Anthias (Pseudanthias thompsoni) and Japanese pygmy angelfish (Centropyge interrupta), as well as a variety of table corals.

Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument is 139,797 square miles of the Pacific Ocean and was created by Presidential proclamation on June 15, 2006 by President George W. Bush. Papahanaumokuakea, which comprises 10 islands and atolls in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, was designated as a United Nations World Heritage site in 2010. For more information, visit www.waquarium.org

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