Looks like humans are not the only ones affected by social isolation. It has apparently gotten to the eels too! Which is why an aquarium in Japan is asking visitors to video call its eels who are rather stressed out from no human contact since the past 2 months.
Eels At The Sumida Aquarium In Japan Are Facing Social Anxiety
At Tokyo’s Sumida Aquarium, caretakers found that after nearly two months of isolation from humans, the spotted garden eels in its aquarium had begun to behave oddly. Every time a caretaker passed by the tanks housing the eels, the eels would immediately burrow their heads into the sand.
— すみだ水族館【公式】 (@Sumida_Aquarium) April 3, 2020
According to authorities, the odd behavior displayed by the eels is the result of isolation. Since the aquarium has been closed since March 1 due to the coronavirus, the eels have become unfamiliar to the presence of humans.
While garden eels are usually sensitive and wary by nature, their disappearance into the sand each time is making it difficult for the caretakers to monitor their health.
Japanese Aquarium Asks Visitors To Video Call Its Eels
So the authorities came up with a solution – a three-day ‘face-showing festival’ where humans were asked to virtually check in on the 300-odd garden eels in the aquarium and remind them about their existence.
People were asked to show their faces, wave and talk to the eels in five-minute slots, though not too loudly (because of their sensitive nature). As per the Guardian, the festival began on May 3 and ends today.
The campaign has also received immense popularity online, where people used the hashtag #PleaseRememberHumans to show their support to the eels.
What an innovative way to attune the eels back to normalcy, right? We bet only the Japs could think of something like this!