For my anonymous shark training question. We start our shark target training sessions by ringing a bell underwater 20 times. My coworker Riah is the one holding the pole. She puts the target pole, that has food on the end, in front of the Sharks. And if they choose to take the food then I ring the bell 3 times and record which shark ate. It’s really basic training but the reasons we do it are to help us catch these large creatures for their yearly physicals. When they associate the bell with food we can use it to call them over. When they associate the pole with food we can use it to lead them into the smaller attached tank to give us better access to them.
12,15,16, and 30 are the ones i am most curious about if you please
12. Favorite species of shark?
It changes pretty frequently but I think right now my favorite has to be the broadnose sevengill shark (Notorynchus cepedianus), not only because they are very basal and interesting, but because they look like they’ve just told a joke.
15. What would you do if you suddenly had an extra 200 gallon (757L) tank?
Buy more stingray pups and use it as a growout tank (obviously lol).
16. What would you do if you suddenly had an extra 10 gallon (37L) tank?
I’d probably give it away tbh, I have about 8 ten gals sitting in my attic.
I am so lucky. I have been recruited to help during some of our shark training sessions. I am responsible for bridging them when they successfully take food from the target pole. AND I get to desensitize them to tactile behaviors. So basically when a shark swims by the surface I reach down and touch it gently along its back and hope that it doesn’t freak out or thrash. These types of behaviors are important for the sharks to be comfortable with so that they aren’t as stressed during their yearly physicals.
We have 6 Sevengill Sharks swimming around our shark tunnel. They get target fed every Tuesday and Saturday, and it’s not an easy process. It’s a three person job. The feeder is in the middle and the two divers on the outside are fenders. It’s the fenders job to keep sharks and other fish away from the person in the middle with the food. And also to keep the Sharks from coming overhead. All the divers heads have to be constantly on a swivel and moving around looking for potential sharks to feed and situations to fend off. The dive lasts 30 minutes. There is also an observer on the public side watching the divers, giving them signals, and recording what sharks ate how much.
Went SCUBA diving in the shark tank for the first time. My friend snapped a picture of me while I was cleaning the acrylic. The first thing they told me when I got in was “The sharks have the right of way, so stay back.”