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Great White Shark Research in Mexico

Mauricio Hoyos, Director, Pelagios Kakunjá

May 17 2021 | 11:00am to 12:00pm PST Online

Mauricio Hoyos looks at a shark from inside a submersible vehicle

Sharks are fascinating creatures, but many times they are misunderstood, and as a result their populations have been declining through time. Dr. Hoyos has done extensive work trying to understand the behavior of white sharks in Mexico and determining the exploitation levels of their population. He is also interested in the conservation of this species and in the outreach of scientific information to the community, where he has given around 300 talks to student groups of all ages. Anyone who thinks sharks are cool (I know I do!), is interested in how is scientific research done with sharks and how can this research be applied to conservation and outreach, you should definitely come to Dr. Hoyos' talk!
— Liliana Sierra Castillo, Bren PhD Student


Are you afraid of the White Shark? Why should you be or be not? The White Shark is often portrayed as terrifying in movies. This talk will enlighten you on what the real nature of the Whites Sharks are. It will also include fantastic facts about the research done in Mexican waters since 2003, including the use of technology to understand more about how this magnificent species ambushes their preferred prey, the seals. Join us to learn more about the threats and potential risks that white sharks are facing, and how scientists and authorities are trying to protect them. 


Dr. Mauricio Hoyos is the Director and Co-founder of Pelagios Kakunjá. Among his main lines of research are nursery areas, reproduction, movement patterns and habitat use, ecology and behavior of sharks. Based in La Paz, he has studied several species of sharks in different parts of the world: Guadalupe Island, the Gulf of California, the Revillagigedo Archipelago, Playa del Carmen, Cancun and Isla Mujeres (Mexico), Clipperton (France), Coco Island (Costa Rica), Malpelo (Colombia), Los Roques (Venezuela) and British Virgin Islands (England). He has studied sharks since 1998 and is part of the scientific committee of several marine reserves in Mexico. Dr. Hoyos has been active in outreach and education on shark conservation, giving around 300 talks to groups as young as elementary school children, as well as high school and university students. During his career, he has received several awards (Golden Diver, Shark Researcher of the Year and Sea Hero) for his work in the conservation and protection of sharks. He has also published 41 articles in peer-reviewed international scientific journals, 3 book chapters, and a book on the White Shark. He has been the scientific advisor to several international documentaries for international networks such as National Geographic, Discovery Channel, Japan Underwater Films, IMAX, Natural History New Zealand, and national networks such as Televisa and Canal Once TV-Mexico.

Watch a recording of the talk here

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