From Andy Dehart, Director of Biological Programs at the National Aquarium, DC
Shark Week 2009 kicks off this Sunday at 9:00 EST on Discovery Channel! I am wrapping up a frenzied media tour that has enabled me to talk to television networks, radio stations, and newspapers around the country about how important sharks are to our oceans and the threats they face, as well as the Shark Conservation Act of 2009. Tonight we will be talking with Larry King live in Los Angeles to dispel many of the myths surrounding sharks and shark attacks. Throughout the next week I will be on the CBS Early show which will be covering Shark Week every day.
One of the questions I am often asked throughout these interviews is, what is my favorite experience with sharks. In all honesty, every encounter I have had with sharks has been incredibly special to me. I have had the good fortune to be able to dive with over 40 species of sharks in my career and each experience has been unique. My hope is that all of these species will be around for future generations to enjoy as I have.
Continue reading ‘Exploring sharks, after dark’
From Andy Dehart, Director of Biological Programs in Washington, DC
If you are a shark fan like me, you probably already know that Discovery Channel’s SHARK WEEK is just around the corner! Now that I have the great privilege of having two wonderfully rewarding jobs with the National Aquarium and the Discovery Channel, Shark Week is becoming a year round affair for me.
I have worked for the National Aquarium in numerous capacities – from selling tickets in admissions to my current role at our newly renovated DC venue – for nearly 17 years. Sharks have always been my passion. For me it started when I was only five years old when I got to see a 6 foot long Caribbean reef shark while snorkeling with my father in the Florida Keys. Pardon the pun, but I was hooked and have followed the dream of working with sharks ever since.
Throughout my career I have dabbled in media and when the unfortunate and extremely rare cases of mistaken identity rolled around and a bather or surfer was attacked by a shark, I have been called upon by the media to answer questions about shark attacks. In 2003 I got the chance to work on my first Shark Week show, Sharks Under Glass, about sharks in public aquariums. Last year I was approached by Discovery Channel to sign on as their Shark Advisor, which meant reviewing show and online content, contributing to online content and doing television and print interviews.
Continue reading ‘A life with sharks’
From Andy Dehart, Director of Biological Programs at the National Aquarium in DC and Discovery Channel Shark Advisor
Shark Week is finally here! No one loves Shark Week more than I do. I have been fascinated with sharks since my first sighting at just 5 years old when I was scuba diving with my dad. I have had the opportunity to study sharks for most of my career, and have had many close and personal encounters with these perfect predators. However, sharks continue to amaze me each and every day.
For the last 21 years Discovery Channel’s Shark Week has featured programming that aims to teach people that we don’t have much to fear in sharks. Unfortunately, our fascination with sharks seems to be tied too closely with fear.
I encourage people to tune into Shark Week to learn more about sharks, how they rule the marine ecosystem and yet, are being threatened by man. Catch a special edition of Mythbusters tonight at 8 pm EST. For now, I’d like to leave you with a mythbusters of my own…
Continue reading ‘Busting Myths!’