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Last Updated: Wednesday, 22 September, 2004, 09:48 GMT 10:48 UK
Mirror view for lobster babies
Mirrors over the lobster hatchery
The mirrors let visitors of all heights see inside the tanks
Looking into tanks of baby lobsters had proved a problem for people in wheelchairs until a North Wales zoo came up with an innovative solution.

Staff at the Anglesey Sea Zoo noticed that children and wheelchair users were unable to see into the hatchery.

So workers placed mirrors over the tanks so that the lobsters' development could be seen by all visitors.

The Disability Rights Commission has praised the idea, ahead of new access laws coming into force in October.

Zoo manager Fiona Willcox said that it had been a simple solution to the problem.

"We have hung mirrors over the hatchery at a 45 degree angle so that everyone, no matter what their height, can see into the hatchery," she said.

The zoo which is Wales' largest marine aquarium is on the shores of the Menai Strait and has over 50 species of native marine life.

Alun Thomas from the Disability Rights Commission Wales said that they had been impressed with the "innovative" way the zoo had tackled the problem.

"They have been quite ingenious in how they have overcome this barrier," he said.

"The zoo has come up with a creative solution."

He said that the zoo enhanced the experience for all its visitors by playing 'fishy' sounds and said that the noises were a good way of stimulating conversation between people.

On 1 October, the Disability Discrimination Act will be enforced in full, which means the physical barriers will have to be removed to allow reasonable access to public buildings for all.


SEE ALSO:
Zoo ends lobsters' growing pains
03 Jun 04  |  North West Wales
Seahorses get zoo's backing
02 Aug 03  |  North West Wales


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