Program Details

Sharks… Intriguing, mysterious, feared and revered. There is no better place to study and dispel myths about sharks than the Shark Reef Marine Reserve (SRMR) on the spectacular shores of Fiji.
Location:
Suva, Fiji
Program Type:
Study Abroad
Degree Level:
Undergraduate
Term:
Summer

Program Overview

Program Description:

Under the instruction of professional researchers, observe and study shark biology, behavior and physiology, as well as the physical characteristics of the resident sharks of the SRMR. Then take your newfound knowledge into the field as you scuba dive with silvertip, grey reef, black tip reef, bull and tawny nurse sharks. Experience the thrill of studying these amazing creatures up close as they cruise along the reef slope and ledge that drops off into the abyss of the Beqa Passage. Don’t forget your camera! Collect and input data for the Swiss Shark Foundation’s studies on resident sharks, noting how many species of sharks you see on dives, the male to female ratio, who fed and who of the named population showed up. Begin to identify the different sharks by name — Hook, Crook, Big Mamma and Blackbeard — and perhaps have the chance to name one yourself. Learn about the relationship between the reserve and local villages, and how the project overcame challenges to create a successful balance between shark conservation, dive tourism, the interests of village fisherman, the local economy and the government. Take a day to dry off and venture to the village of Wainabia to ask the Chief’s permission to hike Shark Fin Hill. As you hike through the rainforest to the top, learn about Fijian culture from local guides and the impact the SRMR has had on the community.

Back at the SRMR, we continue our shark studies as we compile, summarize and discuss our surveys and field research for our final projects. Talk about the role of sharks in the food chain and how they are critical to ocean ecosystems. Examine the negative impact of long line fishing, as well as the misrepresentation of sharks from Hollywood movies to folk tales and myths. Learn about the Shark Tagging Program and how it looks at the migratory movements of sharks. Soft coral dives in the Beqa Lagoon abound with over 250 species of fish from tiny critters to large pelagics… Breathtaking! Encounter blue ribbon eel, lionfish, jacks, giant groupers, octopus and scorpionfish on unforgettable dives.

Sharks… Intriguing, mysterious, feared and revered. There is no better place to study and dispel myths about sharks than the Shark Reef Marine Reserve (SRMR) on the spectacular shores of Fiji. Observe them up close in a controlled setting with professional guides. Imagine swimming through an astounding abundance of marine life to discover several species of sharks on one dive! Learn about shark biology, behavior, history and future prospects. Although they have thrived on earth for millions of years, pre-dating dinosaurs, sharks are now in danger of extinction, killed for their fins, for medicinal purposes or through destruction of their habitats. Collect data for ongoing research and conservation efforts. Visit several Fijian villages, where you are welcomed by the chief and a formal kava ceremony. Hear ancient stories of the Shark God that protects the islanders from harm. This adventure leaves you with a love and respect for the Fijian people and islands, as well as the sharks you’ve come to study.

Quite simply, no one does it better. Broadreach has the most experience running marine science programs for teenagers, as well as an extraordinary and unequaled selection of hands-on adventures. Our students earn college credit and discover our world’s marine environments and inhabitants firsthand – from amazing marine mammals to delicate coral reef systems – in some of the most spectacular habitats imaginable. This is not your ordinary marine biology summer program!

Setting Description:
Fiji has some of the friendliest people in the world. It also has the friendliest sharks in the world. Contrary to myth, sharks are actually gentle and beautiful creatures. Nothing compares to seeing bulls, tigers and lemons in their natural habitats. Which is exactly what you do in Pacific Harbour, on Viti Levu — home base for this hands-on dive and research experience. Viti Levu is Fiji’s largest island. Pacific Harbour also faces out into the Beqa Lagoon and Beqa Island (pronounced Bega). On Beqa all of your roads lead to shark exploration. Beqa Dive Adventures takes you to a dive site where sharks gather. Bring an underwater calculator if you have one because it’s not a question of if you’ll see sharks, but rather, how many. Beqa is also home to the Rukua village, where villagers are ready to welcome you to their home.

Program Reviews

Overall Rating

5.0

Based on 1 Reviews

  • A Summer To Remember
    5.0
    10/19/15

    I went on this trip this past summer and was amazed by the experience. I made such great friends, learned about sharks and the culture of Fiji, and became a better diver in three and a half weeks. I was so excited for the trip but I didn't really like

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    Bottom Line:Yes, I would recommend this to a friend
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