Shark week at Greater Cleveland Aquarium highlights plight of the shark

Finning is prime reason for shark disappearance

CLEVELAND - Shark Week at the Greater Cleveland Aquarium highlights the importance of the shark in our world's ecosystem as the beautiful creatures continue to diminish in numbers.

GCA feels very close to the subject because it features a large shark exhibit with 18 live sharks in a habitat complete with reefs and a shipwreck.

Beginning July 28, you can help fill an area larger than a football field with chalk outlines of 2,500 sharks, representing the number that disappear from our oceans every 30 minutes.

Volunteers will collaborate to highlight the beauty of sharks and to illustrate the perilous decline of the worldwide shark population.

Plywood templates will be used to draw silhouettes of various shark species, ranging from about 3 feet to 6 feet in length.

Conceived and created by artist Jim Gundlach, "SHARKS: Draw the Line!" invites the public to a vibrant, temporary art space in the parking lot adjacent to the Greater Cleveland Aquarium on July 28 and July 29.

On Sunday, visitors can pick up colored chalk and fill in the line-drawn sharks, creating a bright mosaic to help turn the tide in public awareness.

Humans kill about three sharks every two seconds, thanks in large part to the trade in shark fins for food. Scientists estimate that more than 90 percent of the worldwide shark population has been wiped out in recent decades.

If you're participating in the chalk drawing, you'll get 20 percent off aquarium admission.

On the Web:
Greater Cleveland Aquarium www.greaterclevelandaquarium.com

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