Creature comforts at Christmas

'˜Twas the night before Christmas,

Ho, ho, ho - a Christmas message from Jamie Elvidge, Dive Officer at Skegness Aquarium. ANL-170812-164308001

And all through the tanks,

Excitement was bubbling,

As fish waited for their sprouts’

The sharks will be at the front of the queue for their Christmas dinner. ANL-170812-164323001

Christmas may be just another day for the animals and marine life at two Skegness attractions, but no-one misses out on a bit of festive fun.

Whether its the ‘grazers’ at Skegness Aquarium tucking into their sprouts or rescued seals tucking into their top quality herrings and sprats at Skegness Natureland, one thing is for sure, they will be looking forward to their Christmas Day dinner just like the rest of us.

Skegness Aquarium has been looking festive for weeks but the staff’s whacky festive hats don’t seem to have worried even the most inquisitive snake.

Roxanne Prime, the curator, said: “Christmas is just another day at the aquarium.

Joseph Elsdon-Bird (Aquarist) cleaning out a tank at Skegness Aquarium ahead of his Christmas Day duties. ANL-170812-164220001

“There are 600 individuals and 60 species in the main tank - and they will need feeding as usual.

“We like to give them treats though - the grazers love their brussels. They are just like family really.”

On the Christmas Day rota are Joseph Elsdon-Bird (aquarist) and Stephen Collins (trainee aquarist).

Joseph said: “I’m looking forward to it. We’ll be giving out some festive cheer but when we are closed it’s a chance to spend some quality one-to-one time with the marine life and play.”

Meercats are always up for fun at Christmas. This one is putting the finishing touches to his snowcat at Skegness Natureland. ANL-170812-164507001

At Skegness Natureland there will be some hungry rescued seals waiting for their Christmas dinner.

The seal sanctuary rescues 30-50 seals a year and Christmas can be one of the busiest times of the year as the pups born up the coast at Donna Nook come ashore.

Director Richard Yeadon said: “We’ve just released some Harbour seals but have rescued our first grey seal that would have come from those born at Donna Nook and we’ll be expecting some more around Christmas.

“They’ll be having top quality herring and sprats for their Christmas dinner to help them pile on the pounds.

Could we have a New Year baby at Skegness Natureland? ANL-170812-164611001

“Without their mothers milk they would starve so we get them onto fish straight away.

“We’ve got two penguins sat on eggs too, so you never know, we could have some New Year babies.”

Skegness Aquarium and Skegness Natureland are opening during the holidays but closed to the public on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

Top quality herrings and sprats will be on the menue for this young seal at Skegness Natureland. Piling on the pounds is what Christmas is all about for the rescued seals. ANL-170812-164421001
The sharks will be at the front of the queue for their Christmas dinner. ANL-170812-164323001
Joseph Elsdon-Bird (Aquarist) cleaning out a tank at Skegness Aquarium ahead of his Christmas Day duties. ANL-170812-164220001
Meercats are always up for fun at Christmas. This one is putting the finishing touches to his snowcat at Skegness Natureland. ANL-170812-164507001
Could we have a New Year baby at Skegness Natureland? ANL-170812-164611001
Top quality herrings and sprats will be on the menue for this young seal at Skegness Natureland. Piling on the pounds is what Christmas is all about for the rescued seals. ANL-170812-164421001