National Aquarium hosts Shark Weekend in D.C.

The roam the world’s largest oceans and, at times, can be dangerous, but sharks rank among the least understood animals.

That’s why the National Aquarium ramped up their annual Shark Weekend to better educate the public about one of the world’s most fascinating ocean dwellers.

Six-year-old Noah Mertz knows his sharks.

“What this shark right here?” ABC7's Jummy Olabanji{ }asked.

“It’s is the spotted zebra shark ... Oh no, leopard shark,” Noah replied.

“The sharks have big teeth and small eyes so they can see pretty good,” he added.

During Shark Weekend, there will be special shark exhibits, feeding and discussions.

Jay Bradley, the National Aquarium’s curator, says Shark Weekend is one way they work to dispel some of the negative stereotypes about sharks.

“You learn more by seeing the live animals and being able to see them in a simulated environment,” he said.

“I think one of the common misconceptions is that they are just eating machines and they are out there trying to attack people or bite people and that really isn't the case at all,” Bradley added.

The aquarium has four types of sharks.

Bradley said, “While we've got her upside down, you're welcome to touch the belly and see what it feels like." he said.

What's it feel like?”{ }he asked.

“Kinda sandpapery,” Olabanji replied.

The public will not be able to pet any of the sharks during the event, but Noah said people should still come out because “It’s pretty cool.”

Shark Weekend will take place on July 28 and 29 at the National Aquarium, located at 14 Street and Constitution Avenue.

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