In South Africa’s beautiful Walker Bay, meet some of the world’s least-known ocean dwellers to help researchers learn how to protect their habitat.
Be among the first to research shysharks, catsharks, pajama sharks, and other small shark species, some of which live nowhere else in the world. They could disappear before humans get to learn much about them: 25 percent of the world’s shark and ray species (their relatives) face extinction.
That’s why scientists want your help. Very little is known about the sharks in Walker Bay. To better protect them, scientists urgently need to understand the diversity of species and how they are distributed throughout the bay. Then, they can determine which particular habitats and areas need year-round protected status.
Get to know these overlooked sharks from the shore or a research boat. You’ll survey the bay to fish for them, record the environment where they are caught, and safely release them. You’ll get up close and personal with the sharks as you measure them, photograph them, take tissues samples for genetic analysis, and tag them.
You’ll also see other marine animals: your team will setup underwater video cameras and analyze the footage. Walker Bay is rated one of the world’s best places to spot whales from land, so if you join us while the migratory southern right whales happen to be in town, you’re likely to get an amazing view.