The definition of lucky: Nine students in the Museum’s Upward Bound program, along with 1 mentor and Upward Bound staff, getting to meet with Neil Hammerschlag of the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science. He is a research assistant professor who studies the behavioral ecology of marine predators. The definition of luckier: these students spending the day with him at the Keys Marine Lab on Long Key, learning about his areas of research study – which include determining habitat and migration patterns of large coastal sharks, and studying how toxins in the marine environment have a greater and greater effect the farther you go up the food chain. The definition of luckiest: students getting to go out on a research boat with him and help to catch (for observation) and gather research on 7 different sharks, including hammerhead, bull, lemon, and nurse sharks. Neil Hammerschlag’s research is meant to advance ocean conservation efforts through science, and these students were privileged to be a part of it.

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