CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS (PRWEB) October 13, 2015
The Texas State Aquarium is pleased to announce the public grand opening of its newest exhibit, Saving Sharks, on Tuesday, October 13. The new $325,000 exhibit is located in the Aquarium’s changing exhibit space, which had previously featured Amazon.
With support from OCEARCH, the Houston Museum of Natural Science, and the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, the exhibit is designed to capture the hearts and minds of budding conservationists and lifelong shark fans alike.
Guests will have the chance to track tagged sharks in real time via the OCEARCH Global Shark Tracker, feel what it is like to swim underwater with these apex predators via a full-sized diving cage, and even stand next to the past and present kings of the ocean: a life-sized megalodon jaw and great white shark replica. The engaging and interactive exhibit features a wall-sized map showing visitors what shark species dominate our Gulf of Mexico, a live shark touch area where visitors can feel and see bamboo and epaulette sharks, as well as various habitats where cat sharks and tasselled wobbegongs are on view.
As many shark species are in decline globally, the exhibit liberally features information regarding threats such as shark finning and overfishing that many shark populations face and how humans can help to make a difference.
“This exhibit is at the heart of what we do at the Texas State Aquarium,” says Jesse Gilbert, Senior Vice President & Chief Operating Officer. “We wanted to showcase the remarkable science being done in our area, and the conservation efforts that go into our everyday operations. Sharks provide a natural balance and equilibrium to the oceans that cannot be replicated – we want to show people how important they really are.”
Through its Wildlife Care, Conservation, and Research Fund (WCCR), the Texas State Aquarium is a supporter OCEARCH’s shark research efforts. Every year, the Aquarium directs a portion of its operating revenue to the WCCR Fund, through which it awards funding to programs that focus on habitat restoration, wildlife management, conservation, and wildlife rehabilitation in the Gulf of Mexico. Projects must focus on species in the Aquarium’s living collection or habitats that support those species.