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July 20, 2024
6:30 pm
8:30 pm

SharkFest 2024 Opening Gala Speaker Series

Our SharkFest celebration begins with an opening night lecture series featuring Jay Bradley, Blue Wonders curator from the National Aquarium, and shark researcher Dr. Stacy Farina, an evolutionary and functional expert from Howard University.

As the curator of the Blue Wonders: Reefs to Rainforests exhibit, Jay oversees the care of all animals housed in the Blacktip Reef, Living Seashore, and Shark Alley exhibits. He works closely with two assistant curators and several aquarists. Blacktip Reef is an award-winning exhibit simulating an Indo-Pacific reef with 69 species and 630 animals. Shark Alley features seven species of sharks, skates, and rays. Jay joined the National Aquarium at its original Washington, D.C., location in 1997. In March 2013, Jay followed the aquarium to its present Baltimore location. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from George Mason University in Virginia and a master’s degree in marine biology from Florida Institute of Technology. His thesis project focused on the feeding ecology of Atlantic stingrays.

We are also pleased to welcome Dr. Stacy Farina, Assistant Professor in the Department of Biology at Howard University. You may recognize Stacy in her lab coat leading shark dissections during SharkFest. Stacy’s research centers on the evolutionary and functional morphology of vertebrates. She has co-authored two papers on sharks with the first researching how shark teeth wear over time. It addresses the long scientific mystery of whether shark teeth are “single use.” With sharks continually replacing teeth, how many times is a tooth used before it starts to wear down? After testing teeth resilience by gluing them to a power saw, the study found that some sharks’ teeth wear almost immediately, supporting the “single-use” hypothesis, while others take more use to wear down.

Natural History Society of Maryland, 6908 Belair Rd, Baltimore


6908 Belair Rd
Baltimore, 21206