Evoqua announced on Thursday, 27th March, that its Vortisand® water filtration system is in use at the Montreal Ecomuseum Zoo, a member of Canada’s Accredited Zoos and Aquariums (CAZA) since 1988, enabling visitors to watch the resident otters play.
Evoqua was chosen to supply a Vortisand H2F® series 600 gpm (136m³/h) unit and a Vortisand cross-flow microsand media filtration system to filter the water flowing in the 6,000ft² (557m²) River Otter habitat, consisting of a 66,000-gallon (250,000 litre) water basin, river banks and sprawling land area.
The effectiveness and reduced carbon footprint left by Vortisand H2F series makes it a one-of-a-kind, ideal solution for the small 3m by 4m mechanical room. However, the habitat’s natural outdoor environment presented a challenge; after some time, the water basin serves as an air scrubber, taking in airborne debris and contaminants as they drift along the surface of the water. These debris and contaminants can build up after some time and coat a range of hard surfaces, including the viewing window and other viable surfaces inside the habitat.
The debris and contaminants also increase water turbidity – the cloudiness or murkiness of water – resulting in lowered water clarity and curbing visitors’ learning experiences. The Vortisand filter’s submicron filtration function aided in eliminating the finer particles from the water that would alternatively restrict visitors from observing the otters through the 50 foot (15 meter) viewing glass, underwater viewing tunnel, and various portholes. As manual intervention and maintenance is nominally required, the Zoo staff would be able to focus more on nurturing and growing the animal family. All residents of the Zoo are there because they may have been born in professional human care, injured in the wild, orphaned. Hence, none can be returned to the wild.
“Every effort is made to provide an exceptional level of care. Here at the Ecomuseum Zoo, we make animal welfare our number one priority, and this habitat is a faithful reflection of that choice. Nothing has been neglected to ensure that the River Otters in our care have a safe, soothing and stimulating environment,” Executive Director of the Ecomuseum Zoo, David Rodrigue said. “We are deeply satisfied with the work achieved by Vortisand systems. Being able to work with such a high level product means a lot for our team’s efficiency and our animals’ well-bring, two of our main concerns.”