A male bronze whaler will be dissected by Waikato University scientists on Sunday, March 26, as part of Bay of Plenty Regional Council's Happy Harbour Fun Day event.
Masters student Melissa Kellett, who will be conducting the dissection, says it will not only be a rare chance for people to learn about sharks, but it will also help scientists continue their research about the species and the role they play in local ecology.
“This will be a rare, hands-on – and a bit smelly – opportunity for people to learn about the unique evolution and physiology of sharks. It will also aid current field studies and allows us to compare the bronze whaler physiology to other shark species.”
The opportunity was only possible after the shark was found washed up deceased at Shakespeare Bay, Whangaparoa, earlier in the year.
It was collected by the Department of Conservation and Auckland Museum staff before being given to the University of Waikato to conduct their research.
The dissection is just one of the exhibits at this Sunday's Happy Harbour Fun Day, an event aimed at providing a hands-on and exciting opportunity for the public to learn about what's happening in Tauranga Moana.
Kids can take part in experiments; go on guided crab and critter hunts, as well as storytelling, music, food trucks and more.
The free Tauranga Moana – Happy Harbour Fun Day is this Sunday, March 26, at Fergusson Park from 11am-2pm.