Since that first Jaws
sighting off Amity Island in 1975, right up to this year's Sharknado II
, pop culture has been fascinated by the menacing reputation of this ancient creature of the deep as a man-eating monster. But the Houston Museum of Natural Science's new interactive exhibit aims to clamp down on some of this rampant shark-hating by educating visitors about the species' important role in the marine ecosystem. Along with exploring their biology and tracking great whites through the Gulf of Mexico in real time, you can actually touch a white-spotted bamboo shark and an epaulette carpet shark in specially designed low aquariums. You'll also learn about man's destructive influence on the shark population and the efforts by marine biologists to conserve and preserve the species, including sharks in the nearby Gulf of Mexico, while experiencing lots of other cool, hands-on displays. Admission includes access to the Permanent Exhibit Hall as well.
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