Aquarium Hall

Spanning 1,300 square metres, the Aquarium Hall at the Berlin-Friedrichshagen site contains nine modern freshwater recirculation systems for keeping and farming fish, as well as several aquarium rooms and measuring rooms.

For example, sturgeons can be found swimming in the large basins. In Germany, IGB coordinates reintroduction projects for the European sturgeon (Acipenser sturio) and the Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus). Parent European sturgeons live in Gironde, the estuary where the rivers Garonne and Dordogne meet on the west coast of France. The intention is for their future offspring to repopulate the tributaries leading into the North Sea. In contrast, Atlantic sturgeons (Acipenser oxyrinchus) are being introduced to the River Oder and its tributaries; it is hoped that they will settle in the Baltic Sea.

Both projects are an important part of the European Biodiversity Strategy. We also use the Aquarium Hall to explore fish behaviour and to test measures to promote more sustainable aquaculture.

In addition, we have in our own aquarium hall different selection lines of zebrafish, which are ready for carrying out experiments (e.g. Uusi-Heikkilä et al. 2015). 

Further experiments with our own Zebrafish-selectionlines

Fishing-related mortality is significantly greater than natural mortality in most commercially exploited fish stocks and, in addition, often selective in size.

Bachelor student Kim Fromm investigated this issue experimentally within her bachelor thesis on the basis of different selection lines. The precise question was whether size-selective cropping / catching influences the personality traits (aggressiveness, sociability, activity and risk taking) of zebrafish populations (Danio rerio). The complete evaluation you will find soon on IFishMan...

In the following different videos for the evaluation of various personality characteristics.


Open field test for activity and risk-taking (RS-Linie)

In this experiment, the total activity and the risk-taking of the test fish were quantified by measuring i) the total distance traveled and ii) the total distance traveled in the defined risk zone (at the center of the aquarium).

Mirror-test for aggressiveness (RS-Linie)

In this experiment, the aggressiveness of the test fish was quantified by counting the attacks of the fish against its own mirror image (mirror on the right).

Sociability test (RS-Linie)

In this experiment, the sociability of the test fish (right) was quantified by counting its attempts to get to the other side of the transparent disk (left).