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Hogfish was one that got away during Pier Aquarium move

So it wasn't quite like that scene from Finding Nemo where the escapee tropical fish are whooshed down the drain.

But it was a little comical and dramatic when a curator for the Pier Aquarium lost his grip on a hogfish and saw it flop away as his team was moving the first fish from the aquarium to a new tank at the USF St. Petersburg University Student Center.

After the team painstakingly moved five fish from the Pier in large, gray trash barrels to USF St. Pete and made sure the water and everything else in the new environment was just right, it was the spirited hogfish that got away.

Butch Ringelspaugh, the curator, kept his calm, swooped the creature up within seconds and placed him safely in the tank. Four other fish, including a coral cat shark that he picked up with his hands, plopped peacefully into the 1,100-gallon tank.

The fish will live temporarily at USF St. Pete until the new Secrets of the Sea aquarium opens in John's Pass Village by the end of 2013. About 20 fish from other marine science programs will remain in the permanent tank at the student center.

The Pier Aquarium’s Butch Ringlespaugh moves a coral cat shark into a tank on Wednesday.

CHRIS ZUPPA | Times

The Pier Aquarium’s Butch Ringlespaugh moves a coral cat shark into a tank on Wednesday.

Hogfish was one that got away during Pier Aquarium move 06/05/13 [Last modified: Thursday, June 6, 2013 8:05am]
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