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Monterey Bay Aquarium Collection / Safari Ltd.

Started by brontodocus, December 06, 2012, 03:48:45 PM

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Hi altogether, among the major toy lines my favorite marine animals series is of course the Monterey Bay Aquarium Collection by Safari Ltd.
Unfortunately, a good deal of the figures are retired by now so it's not too easy to acquire a complete set - the Sperm Whale Calf and the Sea Otters seem to be the hardest to find. Luckily with the help of a few fellow collectors I was able to complete my set about a year ago... ^-^

From top left to lower right: Humpback Whale adult & calf, Megaptera novaeangliae; Gray Whale adult & calf, Eschrichtius robustus; Sperm Whale adult & calf, Physeter macrocephalus; Beluga Whale adult & calf, Delphinapterus leucas; Narwhal, Monodon monoceros; Orca adult & calf, Orcinus orca; Bottle-nosed Dolphin adult & calf, Tursiops truncatus; Pacific White-sided Dolphin, Lagenorhynchus obliquidens; Sea Otter pair, Enhydra lutris; Giant Squid, Architeuthis dux; Whale Shark, Rhincodon typus; Great White Shark, Carcharodon carcharias; Manta Ray, Manta birostris; Sawfish, Pristis cf. pectinata; Great Hammerhead Shark, Sphyrna mokarran; Tiger Shark, Galeocerdo cuvier; Big-eyed Thresher Shark, Alopias superciliosus; and Blue Shark, Prionace glauca. Individual photos coming soon! :D


Cool, especially that giant squid. Is the entire line to scale to each other? The manta ray and sawfish look big!


Not really. From my own measurements e.g. the adult Humpback Whale is between 1/35 and 1/50, the Pacific White-sided Dolphin just between 1/15 and 1/22.5. Giant Squids are by far not as huge as often stated, the biggest recorded mantle length was a little over 2 m so that one shouldn't be more than 1/18. On the other hand, sawfish and mantas can get pretty big, Manta birostris over 7.5 m (9 m?) wide and Pristis pectinata over 7.5 m long. :o


Good choise to start friend. I have few figures of MBA because Safari have problems with Spain. I have only two Tiguer Sharks, Blue Shark and Saw fish. I would like to bought the Giant Squid (He is very cool  8)).
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brontodocus has it in stock - they deliver within the entire EC but shipping is expensive to Spain... :-\

Don't try this at home... ;D

Architeuthis dux Steenstrup, 1857; Giant squid. Length 458 mm, mantle length 122 mm, scale approx. 1:18 or less. "Freddie the Free Diver" by Safari Ltd. is actually a little too small in comparison.

Alopias superciliosus Lowe, 1841; Bigeye Thresher Shark. Length 218 mm, scale approx. 1:7 - 1:22. Human figure is 1:20 scale.

Carcharodon carcharias (Linnaeus, 1758); Great White Shark. Length 267 mm, scale approx. 1:16 - 1:30. Freddie (look, he's doing it again! :o) is 1:22 -1:24 scale.

Rhincodon typus Smith, 1828; Whale Shark. Length 224 mm, scale approx. 1:18 - 1:49. Human figure is approx. 1:41 - 1:46 scale.

Galeocerdo cuvier (Péron & Lesueur, 1822); Tiger Shark. Length 206 mm, scale approx. 1:12 - 1:26 (? - 1:36). Freddie! Now stop it! ;D

Prionace glauca (Linnaeus, 1758); Blue Shark. Length 187 mm, scale approx. 1:9 - 1:21.

Sphyrna mokarran (Rüppell, 1837); Great Hammerhead Shark. Length 220 mm, scale approx. 1:11 - 1:27.

Pristis cf. pectinata Latham, 1794; (Smalltooth) Sawfish. Length 287 mm, scale approx. 1:18 - 1:27.

Manta birostris (Walbaum, 1792); Manta Ray. Length 185 mm, width 227 mm, scale approx. 1:17 - 1:33 (?1:40).

Now I have to grab out the photos of the MBA mammals... :)


Amazing photographs friend and thanks for share the link. Is possible that I will look for thei figure in Ebay  ^-^ because the digital stores are too expensieve  ^-^.
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Thanks, Jetoar! :) At least, the Giant Squid isn't retired so it shouldn't be too hard to find.

Enhydra lutris (Linnaeus, 1758); Sea Otters. Lengths approx. 70 mm, scale approx. 1:14 - 1:21.

Physeter macrocephalus Linnaeus, 1758; Sperm Whale. Length 297 mm, scale approx. 1:35 - 1:69.

Sperm Whale adult (older, longer, and heavier cast) & calf. Lengths 305 / 173 mm, scale approx. 1:35 - 1:67 (adult); 1:24 upward (calf).

Monodon monoceros Linnaeus, 1758; Narwhal. Length 190 mm excluding tusk, total length 259 mm, scale approx. 1:21 - 1:28.

Delphinapterus leucas (Pallas, 1776); Beluga Whale; adult and calf. Length 225 mm and 118 mm, scale approx. 1:18 - 1:26 (adult). Oh, Freddie's back... ;D

Lagenorhynchus obliquidens (Gill, 1855); Pacific White-sided Dolphin. Length 112 mm, scale approx. 1:15 - 1:22.5.

Tursiops truncatus Montagu, 1821; Common Bottlenose Dolphin; adult and calf. Length 173 and 92 mm, scale of adult approx. 1:13 - 1:22.

Orcinus orca (Linnaeus, 1758); Orca or Killer Whale; adult and calf. Length 183 and 117 mm, scale of adult approx. 1:27 - 1:46.


Hey Andre! Haha I helped you find the sperm whale calf and the sea otter pair (I remember when you had a problem with the seller, who forgot to ship you the sea otters).


Hi Kevin, and welcome! :)
Yes, the otters are from the auction you showed me. Phew, when that seller forgot to include the Sea otters I first thought it may have been intentionally, but luckily it wasn't so and he sent me the missing figures. And the Sperm Whale calf was from another auction. Strangely enough, shortly after at least two others popped up on ebay. The Pacific White-sided Dolphin was another hard one, but finally I found a trade partner who could locate one. ^-^
Too bad that there are so few MBA figures still in production... :-\


Woah, what a beautiful line and what great pictures!  :D Unfortunatly I do not own any of these figures, but after seeing those whales....   ;D My eyes are defininetly peeled.


Thanks, Battatitan! :) I'd say get them while you can, the series is getting smaller and smaller, only six whales (adults of Killer Whale, Bottlenose Dolphin, Humpback, Gray, Beluga Whale, and the Narwhal) are still in production. :-\

Oh, I owe you photos of the MBA baleen whales...

Eschrichtius robustus (Lilljeborg, 1861); Gray Whale. Length of adult 339 mm, scale approx. 1:33 - 1:44. Length of calf (awww! :)) 145 mm, scale approx. 1:32 upward.

Megaptera novaeangliae (Borowski, 1781); Humpback Whale. Length 380 mm, scale approx. 1:35 - 1:50. Human figure is 1:50 scale.
Bottom photo: Humpback Whale Calf. Length 148 mm, scale approx. 1:27 upward.


My website: Paleo-Creatures
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Ahh yes, that humpback  ^-^ I've heard it's story on the DTF. It really is an incredible figure.


Oh, you mean you remember the original photo I've posted from the auction (back on DTF version 1)?
Yes, it looked really bad at first:

I was lucky that these were dirt marks instead of scratches. Thoroughly rinsing it with ethanol made it look like new. :)


Ethanol? I could use in my figures, thanks friend. You have done a good work with this figure   ^-^.
My website: Paleo-Creatures
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Of course there is never a guarantee... :) The MBA Humpback Whale seems to be cast in black plastic so I guess the risk wasn't too great. and ethanol isn't as aggressive to the paint as e.g. acetone (which could ruin most figures quickly).


Ok friend. When I will fix my figures, I be care ful  :).
My website: Paleo-Creatures
My website's facebook: Paleo-Creatures


Great pictures of my very favorite collection! These are actually the figures that got me into figure collecting (the Hammerhead Sharks - way back in 1992 - were my first 2 figures!). It's a shame that they probably won't be adding to this collection again. According to someone I spoke with at Safari they cannot add any new figures to the series without Monterey Bay Aquarium's authorization. Over the past few years apparently some of the Wild Safari Sealife figures were proposed as MBA Collection figures, but the Aquarium wasn't interested in expanding the line at the time, so Safari released them as Wild Safari figures. Also, I'm told that this year's Wild Safari Humpback Whale, while nice, is nothing compared to the MBA Humpback Whale. The person I was speaking with did not confirm whether that was intentional or not.


calling the attention of Dr. Andre/brontodocus. :)
i bought a loose/prev. owned MBA great hammerhead shark. it is actually in excellent condition but there is something that's bugging me. is the lower lobe of the caudal fin slightly textured like in the image below?


Hi sauroid, while I didn't know with certainty what kind of texture you mean until I checked my two MBA Hammerhead Sharks...

The one above is apparently an older cast and was preowned. The other was new when I bought it. But both show some texture at the lower lobe, I guess it's something that happens during production (or was this perhaps the position of a pipe in the casting mould?). But now I notice that there is also quite a loss of detail from the older figure above to the overall smoother one below (note especially 2nd dorsal and anal fin). Like some Carnegie Dinosaurs, there is also a significant difference in weight, the one above is 94 g and the other 73 g. And yes, colouration is different, too. Your figure seems more similar to the one below.