Calling all marine life enthusiasts and beach goers — Shark Day at Cal State Long Beach has got you covered.
Chris Lowe, biology professor at Cal State Long Beach and recurring guest star on Discovery Channel’s Shark Week, will be presenting shark safety at the Shark Day Long Beach event Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Long Beach Marine Safety Chief, Gonzalo Medina, will also be a special presenter at the event, and a brief Q&A will follow the experts’ presentations.
This educational event is a collaboration between the university and California Assemblyman Patrick O’Donnell.
Experts have planned this event to help educate the public on shark safety and awareness as shark season approaches in May. According to a January report from the Shark Research Committee, there were nine non-fatal shark attacks along the Pacific Coast in 2017 with the victims engaging in activities such as kayaking and surfing.
“The goal [of this event] is to provide the local public with an update about what we know about white sharks, what we don’t know, and how we can use new technology and techniques to figure out what we don’t know,” said Lowe, director of the Shark Lab.
Attendees will be provided an opportunity to tour the Shark Lab, which has been on campus since 1966.
“Events like this are important because they bring awareness to the facts that sharks create a balance in our ecosystem,” said Morgan Wachter, a kinesiology graduate student. “Yes, they may be scary, but they do their part in the world to help out with the balance of life.”
Lowe’s goal for the event is to educate attendees about the misconception of sharks.
“One of our goals is to provide all local lifeguards and their agencies with science-based information about sharks, so that they can better do their job in keeping beach users safe and educated,” Lowe said. “Our other goal [is educating] the public about sharks, so they can make better decisions on how to use the ocean safely, as well as allay fear.”
The event is free to the public and will take place at room 150 of the lecture hall building. Guests are asked to RSVP and find parking in lots E9 and E10 upon arrival.
“I really care about the well-being of animals and would love to know more about these creatures,” said Makala Rhodes, a junior international studies major. “As a vegan, I am invested in the well-being of animals, even those that wouldn’t mind taking a bite out of me.”