Celebrate the leopard shark and other local marine life during SHARK SUMMER at Birch Aquarium.
Meet the Locals: Shark Summer 2015
June 20 - August 15
Activities, presentations, and exhibits
help reveal that sharks
are vulnerable and critical members of ocean habitats. Learn the latest in
shark research, discover the fascinating lives of our local sharks, and get
hands-on with shark teeth, skin, and other biofacts.
ESET is proud to sponsor Shark Summer 2015 and Dr. Andy Nosal’s research and expeditions, which use technology to safely tag and track leopard sharks. ESET is offering Birch Aquarium friends a free 30-day trial of its Internet security products. Learn more at www.eset.com/us/birch.
For a day-by-day list of shark activities, please see our calendar.
Included with admission
Have you ever had a shark encounter? Here's your opportunity to meet and touch some of our local sharks. Shark-themed activities led by aquarium naturalists and high school summer interns will reveal that sharks are vulnerable and critical members of ocean habitats. See what it takes for a baby leopard shark to grow up, discover how sharks use their teeth the way we use utensils, and learn about the latest shark research from Scripps scientists.
Shark Activity Stations
Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays: 9:30 a.m.–4 p.m.
Wednesdays: 9:30 a.m.–noon
Shark Feeding Presentation at ElasmoBeach
Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10:30 a.m.
Shark Encounter Talk & Touch
Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1:30 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.
Shark Stories/Meet & Greet
Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:30 a.m.
Saturdays and Sundays at 12:15 p.m.
Snorkel with the Leopard Sharks
July 11*, 25, 26; August 8*, 16, 22; September 19, 20: 8-10 a.m.
Members: $25, Public: $30
Join aquarium naturalists and visit leopard sharks in their underwater home off the La Jolla coast. Pick up snorkel tips as you discover the abundant variety of animals that live among the kelp, sandy bottom, and rocks. Intermediate swimming ability is required and previous snorkeling experience is recommended. Participants must supply their own gear. Ages 10 + (minors must also be accompanied by a paid adult). Pre-purchase required.
*These programs will be led by Andy Nosal, Birch Aquarium's DeLaCour Postdoctoral Fellow in Ecology & Conservation
June 18: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Included with admission
Exploration, & Adventure. Over 400 species of shark swim in the world's oceans. Enhance your
knowledge of these spectacular fishes through hands-on activities. Meet
local sharks and the Scripps scientists studying them to learn what you
can do to protect these important predators.
Sharks on the Line
July 18: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Included with admission
Exploration, & Adventure. As sharks are fished in record numbers and their populations continue to
decline, protecting these key predators is more important than ever.
Meet local researchers to hear more about the value of shark research
for informing and shaping fisheries policy.
Meet the Locals
August 15: 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
Included with admission
Exploration, & Adventure. For more than seven years, Scripps Oceanographer Andy Nosal has been
studying the secret lives of local leopard sharks. Join us for a special
event with this leopard shark expert, listen to his recent discoveries
in the field, and learn about future research goals at La Jolla Shores
Summer Camp: Shark Encounters
For grades 4-6
July 6-10, July 20-24, Aug. 3-7 and Aug. 17-21
Members: $249 Public: $279 per week
Explore the ocean from top to bottom during our accredited Summer Learning Adventure Camps. Campers in grades 4–6 can become shark experts as they spend the week encountering and investigating a variety of sharks. They'll learn about shark biology, behavior, and conservation through observation and hands–on activities. Campers can snorkel with local sharks and meet Scripps Oceanography shark researchers.
Andy Nosal, Ph.D., is Birch Aquarium's DeLaCour Postdoctoral Fellow in Ecology & Conservation. A marine biologist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, Andy will spend the next three years working with Birch Aquarium and sharing his scientific discoveries with aquarium visitors. He specializes in shark ecology, with a particular focus on La Jolla's population of leopard sharks. Knowledge generated through Andy's research has important implications for local conservation efforts. His fellowship at Birch Aquarium is named in honor of the late David DeLaCour, a shark enthusiast who left a transformational gift to the aquarium upon his death in 2010.
Ph.D. in Marine Biology (2013)
Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California - San Diego
B.S. in Biology with Specialization in Environmental and Biological Conservation (2007)
University of Virginia
Social and non-social forces governing aggregation behavior in the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata).
Collaborators: P. Hastings (SIO, UCSD), I. Couzin (Princeton)
Mechanisms enabling navigation and homing in the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata). Collaborators: P. Hastings (SIO, UCSD)
Circadian rhythms and biological clocks in the swell shark (Cephaloscyllium ventriosum)
and horn shark (Heterodontus francisci). Collaborators: P. Hastings (SIO,UCSD)
Population structure of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata). Collaborators: R. Burton and A. Barker (SIO,UCSD), E. Lewallen (U. Toronto — Scarborough)
Psychology of fear and willingness to conserve sharks. Collaborators: E. Keenan and A. Gneezy (Rady School of Management, UCSD)
Nosal AP, Cartamil DC, Long JW, Luhrmann M, Wegner NC, Graham JB (in press). Demography and movement patterns of leopard sharks (Triakis semifasciata) aggregating near the head of a submarine canyon along the open coast of southern California, USA. Environmental Biology of Fishes. DOI: 10.1007/s10641-012-0083-5
Nosal AP, Lewallen EA, Burton RS (in review). Multiple paternity in leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) litters from a predominantly female aggregation in La Jolla, CA, USA. Revised manuscript resubmitted to the Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology.
Nosal AP, Royer MA, Caillat A, Kisfaludy E, Wegner NC, Hastings PA (in review). Long-term daily and seasonal variation in leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) abundance at two aggregation sites along the open coast of southern California, USA. Manuscript submitted to Marine Ecology Progress Series.
Nosal AP, et al. (2012). Low incidence of multiple paternity in leopard sharks (Triakis semifasciata) sampled from a predominantly female aggregation. Oral paper presented at the 30th Annual Meeting of the American Elasmobranch Society, World Congress of Herpetology, Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Nosal AP (2012). Local legends: the leopard sharks of La Jolla Shores. Invited oral
presentation at the Jeffrey B. Graham Perspectives on Ocean Sciences Lecture Series, Birch Aquarium, La Jolla, CA, USA.
Nosal AP, et al. (2011). Aggregation behavior of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) at the
head of La Jolla Submarine Canyon, La Jolla, California, USA. Oral paper presented at the 29th Annual Meeting of the American Elasmobranch Society, Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, Minneapolis, MN, USA. *Samuel H. Gruber Award for Best Student Oral Paper
Nosal AP, et al. (2011). Aggregation behavior of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) associated with the head of La Jolla Submarine Canyon, La Jolla, California, USA. Oral paper presented at the First International Conference on Fish Telemetry, Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan. *Award for Best Student Oral Paper
Nosal AP, et al. (2010). Movement patterns of the leopard shark (Triakis semifasciata) along the open coast of San Diego County, California. Oral paper presented at the 28th Annual Meeting of the Elasmobranch Society, Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, Providence, RI, USA.