“We do not have enough money to pay our staff so please come to our aquarium!” Suddenly, a tweet people have never seen appeared on the screen of twitter. A person was standing on his head.
“I really love the people here and what I want to do is to make fans for our staff,” said Kaori Mori, manager of the public relations team.
Katsurahama Aquarium, a long-loved place from people by Kochi, is now having to go to great links to keep the aquarium opened, and attractive using SNS attract attention.
In 2016, they celebrated their 85th anniversary.
“In this year, the character Otodochan was created,” laughed Kaori. “Also our twitter account was created in this year, and she is writing it. At first, it was so scary for the children that it made them cry and scream.”
“Most aquariums put a spotlight on the animals, but we focus on the staff. The reason why we do this is that we want visitors to see us and then second, see the animals,” said Kaori. “I made the staffs create their own signature.”
Katsurahama aquarium is a place filled with love and respect between the staffs and to the visitors.
On the other hand, people who come here are decreasing.
“Probably, the number of people who visit here decreased by three times since the peek.” Hisashi Takaya, the accountant, said. “We hope to recover this again, that is why we started twitter.”
He also talked about his exciting episode at here.
“I do not directly take care of the animals, but the most exciting thing in my job is to catch the fishes. Different from zoos, we mostly exhibit fishes from our prefecture. The visitors are pretty surprised with this.”
Kochi is facing a population problem. It has been shrinking since 1990 and unfortunately it is thought that this phenomenon will continue to decrease.
Next to the sea lions, over than forty penguins cover the ground.
Before Shina Hada, the penguin keeper came here to Kochi, she was only interested in fishes. However, she was told to take care of the penguins. At first, she was a little worried, but new knowledge coming into her head makes it exciting.
“There are a lot of things to learn here at Katsurahama aquarium,” she explained. “I always consider what is best for the animals.”
“This aquarium is a little tight, but I think it is an advantage,” Shina added happily. “The distance between the visitors and us are close that we have a lot of opportunities to chat.”
In big aquariums, these things are usually done in the place called the backyard. This is a place where the visitors cannot see. Therefore, in Katsurahama aquarium people can touch some of the animals and see them being fed.
“Now, our aquarium is getting more famous, but I do not want this phenomenon to be a temporary thing. I want this place to be a place where people will never forget and be loved by local people,” said Shina.
Today, the staffs are continuing to work hard to fulfill this dream.