Great White Tagged

The town of Chatham, MA, on Cape Cod, has restricted swimming on its beaches after sightings of several great white sharks.  The sharks may have disappointed beach-goers hoping for one last weekend in the water, but they have excited scientists hoping to study the behavior of the sharks.

sharkScientists were able to affix tags on two of the sharks, marking only the second and third time such a feat was accomplished. The tags will record the sharks’ locations, the temperature of the water, and the amount of light every ten minutes. This data will be recorded until January when the tags will pop off and float to the surface. Once at the surface the tags will send the recorded information to scientists.

The information may prove valuable in understanding the migratory habits of great white sharks.

To read more about the sharks in Chatham at the Boston Herald.

Read about the great white shark at Animal Fact Guide.

Exhibit Review: Crittercam

Crittercam

Last week, we wrote about Crittercam, an exhibit presented by the Museum of Science, Boston and National Geographic.  Yesterday, we had the opportunity to visit the exhibit in person.

Crittercam provides a fascinating look into the behavior of several kinds of animals including penguins, seals, sea turtles, sharks, lions, bears, and more.  Using cameras attached to various animals, scientists were able to gather data about hunting techniques, social norms, and daily activity that had previously eluded them.  The exhibit provides video footage captured by the animals along with explanatory text and a few fun facts about the animals discussed.

Lioness wearing CrittercamBut the exhibit also delves into the technology and methodology of Crittercam.  There are models of animals showing how the special cameras were attached and adapted to a particular animal’s lifestyle.

For example, the soft, flexible shells of leatherback sea turtles did not allow the camera to be attached by an adhesive. Instead, a suction cup was applied to the central plate of the turtle’s shell.

Using videos, photos, life-size models, and computer kiosks, the exhibit appeals to an audience of all ages and interests. So if you live in or plan to visit the Boston area, be sure to visit Crittercam at the Museum of Science, which runs through August 30.

For more info: Crittercam.

News of the Harry Potter Exhibition arrives via owl***

During our visit, the museum made an exciting announcement (delivered by an owl) about a very special international exhibition that will open in Boston on October 25, 2009 called Harry Potter: The Exhibition.

Fans of Harry Potter will soon get the chance to immerse themselves in the wizarding world.  Artifacts and costumes from the latest Harry Potter films will be displayed in a 10,000-sq. ft. space.

For more info, see: Harry Potter: The Exhibition.