Aquarium’s Oceanscape Network Teams With Australia

The Oregon Coast Aquarium has redefined the meaning of “distance learning” through the partnership of its Oceanscape Network with the Australian Institute of Marine Science (AIMS).

Launched in late 2013, Oceanscape is an innovative online tool designed to connect teens and young adults to ocean conservation and exploration while encouraging stewardship of our natural areas. AIMS is Australia’s premiere tropical marine research agency dedicated to supporting both the protection and sustainable use of Australia’s marine heritage. The two organizations have been cooperating over the past few months to create an online event focused on Great Barrier Reef sharks.

“One purpose of Oceanscape is to expand the reach of the Aquarium beyond the Oregon coast,” said Marsh Myers, Manager of Education Innovation and the administrator of the site. “Over the past few years, we’ve used this online platform to transport young people from the Arctic Circle to the bottom of the sea. The partnership with AIMS is our first with an international agency, and their participation will allow online visitors to learn about a fascinating ecosystem thousands of miles from our shores.”

The online program, titled “Tracking Sharks on the Great Barrier Reef”, will run from August 28 to September 1, 2017, and will feature the research of Dr. Michelle Heupel, a pioneer in the acoustic tracking of sharks and rays. Dr. Heupel’s studies on the movements of large predators is helping Australian scientists create better management plans to protect these often imperiled species, while assessing how changing ocean conditions are affecting their life-cycles. The program is free and will consist of daily blogs, videos, downloadable items and more. It will be hosted on the Oceanscape Network at aquarium.oceanscape.org.

The online program will coincide with the Aquarium’s annual Shark Conservation Day, observed on Wednesday, August 30, with educational displays and programs available both on-site and online.

Information and photos provided by Oregon Coast Aquarium