Shark experts with the Harte Research Institute at A&M-Corpus Christi are once again helping kick-off 'Shark Week' on the Discovery Channel.
As we reported last year, they were featured in one of the opening night episodes on Mako sharks. They're back this year with a follow-up on their research. This year's episode is called "Return of the Monster Mako."
For some people, the thought of being next to a shark scares them. But for others like marine biologist Dr. Greg Stunz, it's something he looks forward to everyday.
"Quite amazing to be next to these animals and quite moving to be moving to see these up close and personal," said Stunz.
Stunz was up close and personal alright. In the episode he and a team of biologists travel to the East Coast to find monster Makos that reach up to 1,000 pounds.
"In the show you'll see us diving with them and everyone always says is it scary? It's really not," said Stunz. " Much scarier with the microphone with the camera in your face here is what I always say."
While the show is filled with exciting shark video, Stunz says there's an important message behind the entire Shark Week.
"In general the public should have very little fear about getting bitten by a shark. There's much more variety of other things that will get you before a shark will," said Stunz.
Stunz hopes people take that message to heart, and realize how important their work is with these animals.
"We don't know too much about sharks in Gulf of Mexico, such as what species occur, when they show up here, what are they doing? For example, where are they giving birth? Which we call pupping. Or is it just feeding grounds," said Stunz. "So by attaching these tags to them we can understand their migration patterns and where they go, where they end up, and also that ultimately helps us understand their populations to keep them sustainable so they will be around for future generations."
If you didn't get a chance to catch the episode Sunday evening, don't worry. Wednesday evening the Harte Research Institute will be hosting an encore showing of the episode and a Q&A session with a team of shark experts, including the guys featured on the show.
The event will be 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 29, in the Harte Research Institute building, room 127, on the Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi campus.