SPOKANE, Wash. — A few people have complained about the well-being of the animals at the Blue Zoo Aquarium at the Northtown Mall, and its only been open for about a month.

So KREM 2 checked it out and took those concerns to the owner.

One Blue Zoo Aquarium customer posted a review on their Facebook page that they saw a group of children trying to ride the tortoise, but no staff in sight. 

Owner Wesley Haws said the first two weeks the aquarium was open it was very busy and crowded at times. But he said there is always a staff member assigned to animals the public has access to.

"Not sure what happened in that instance, but I have never been in the Blue Zoo without having somebody with her," Haws said. "I've never seen her alone, without somebody watching her."

He said there are rules customers must follow and they are explained in an introduction video before going into the aquarium. 

Another customer complained about the lack of signage. But Haws says they have some signs posted around the zoo, and they are willing to add more to ensure the animals' safety. 

One review posted, a customer asked if the manta rays were rescued because she said they looked mistreated. 

Haws said they are rescued and many of them were previously in the wild. 

"A lot of them have been fished, so sometimes they'll have hook marks on their mouths," Haws says. "Or, the biggest predator of a ray is a shark. So sometimes they have bite marks when they've been bitten by a shark in the wild."

While KREM was on site Wednesday, our Amanda Roley reported it was not very crowded, and always saw a staff member with animals roaming around the zoo. 

Haws adds customers are encouraged to talk to staff if they have any questions.

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