Atlantic White Shark Conservancy circa 2022
CHATHAM – The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy reports a summer of strong attendance and interest in their current work and research.
Education director Marianne Walsh said the organization’s research team and educational programs have had a busy summer.
âIt has been an exciting year as we have expanded our SharkSmart beach program and extended our reach to the town of Truro at Head of the Meadow Beach,â said Walsh.
âWe were also able to increase the capacity of our outreach center in Chatham and get the ball rolling for our new outreach center in Provincetown.
âLast summer it was a showcase,â she said of the new facility, âand right now we are preparing the permits to renovate the back of this space into a second museum. . So when we go into 2022, we’ll actually have two separate outreach sites for families to go and learn about shark activity. “
Walsh reported strong attendance at the organization’s White Shark expeditions, with full bookings for August indicating growing interest in ecotourism linked to peak predators.
âIt was amazing to see the response and enthusiasm from the people who realize that Cape Town is now a destination for white shark ecotourism, and that they can take a trip here where they stay in hotels, dine in restaurants and have the opportunity to see white sharks in their natural habitat, âsaid Walsh.
The Conservancy has seen growth in its college internship program, with all available internship positions being filled over the summer. The total number of volunteers has dropped due to the COVID pandemic.
As the research draws to a close and the organization looks to fall, the organization will turn its attention to educational programs in local schools and specialty programs and community events planned for the AWSC Shark Center in Chatham, as a weekly story hour program and tip or event dealing in October.
The Chatham location uses a reservation system for bookings until the fall and has kept capacity limits in place throughout the pandemic.
The organization will also design and install the exhibits at the Provincetown site, with plans to fully open the new museum in the spring of 2022.
The Conservancy has reminded the public that white sharks stay in the area during September and October and must exercise caution when entering the water.
âWe have these beautiful local days right now,â said Walsh, âbut if people are using the water recreationally, we want to remind them that the sharks are still in the area, so they need to be careful.â
By, Matthew Tomlinson, CapeCod.com NewsCenter