Cal State Long Beach’s (CSULB) own shark expert Chris Lowe will star in an episode during Discovery Channel’s Shark Week, “Sharks and the City: L.A.” to air Tuesday, July 25 at 9:00PM.
CSULB will host a premiere event, free and open to the public, on Friday, July 21, which will include tours of the Shark Lab, a preview of the episode and a Q&A with Lowe and Ryan Logan, a graduate student at the lab, moderated by Leanne Suter, a lead correspondent from ABC7 “Eyewitness News”.
Shark Week at The Beach is more than timely, as the famous predators have entered the consciousness of Los Angeles’ coastal communities, with sightings of great white sharks increasing.
The episode dives into Lowe’s research on why great white sharks seem to be hunting out of season. Viewers will watch Lowe, director of CSULB’s Shark Lab, as his investigation takes him to Guadalupe Island, off the coast of Mexico, where he discovers the answer.
In May, a shark advisory prompted by increased shark activity near the Peninsula oceanfront in Long Beach led to the Marine Safety Division and lifeguards to work with researchers in tagging one of the great white juveniles.
In June, Long Beach safety officials were alarmed to find that the increased shark activity may not have been simply a result of their seasonal move closer to shore, but film crews tossing fish guts into the water to lure the predators closer to their cameras, the Los Angeles Times reported.
“I know everybody wants the picture, but you put people’s lives at risk,” Jake Heflin, spokesman for the Long Beach Fire Department, told the Times. “You really have to question why you are doing that.”
Lowe told the Times later in June that young sharks are attracted to the California coast’s “safe and rich ecosystem.” In 2015, warm waters brought on by El Niño meant that more sharks were likely to be seen close to shore to give birth and feed on the abundance of stingrays and flatfish.
Shark and Marine Lab guided tours led by marine biology students will take place from 5:30PM to 7:15PM, the preview of Sharks and the City will start at 7:30PM followed by the Q&A session at from 8:30PM to 9:30PM. Parking in Lots 5 and 6 off West Campus Drive is available for $8. Reservations are required for the free event as seating is limited.
Register for the event here.
CSULB is located at 1250 Bellflower Boulevard.