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Shark Fest

In-Depth and Up Close
SHARK SCHOOL
“The shark is the apex predator in the sea. Sharks have molded evolution for 450 million years. All fish species that are prey to the sharks have had their behavior, their speed, their camouflage, their defense mechanisms molded by the shark.”
An in-depth, personal and up-close study of the magnificent and primal shark with the world-renowned behavioral scientist Erich Ritter, Ph.D. This Shark Fest week will have you totally immersed in their world of supreme domination in the abundantly diverse and warm waters of the tropics.

SHARK FEST 2020 - Aug, 29 - Sep., 5

WITH

ERICH RITTER

World-renowned sharkhuman interaction specialist!

THIS YEAR, BEQA WILL BE HOSTING A SHARK PHOTO & FILM FESTIVAL

WITH LOTS OF AMAZING PRIZES FOR OUR SHARK FEST PARTICIPANTS!

$1974 USD accommodation / dive package

$699 USD SharkSchool Course & Certification

“Remove the predators, and the whole ecosystem begins to crash like a house of cards. As the sharks disappear, the predator-prey balance dramatically shifts, and the health of our oceans decline”

Stated costs apply additionally to your Beqa Lagoon Resort Dive Package booking. Course Fee per person USD 699.00 including 6 days daily seminars and 10 shark dives with Erich Ritter Ph.D., upgrade from regular dive package to the 10 shark dive package.

“Eric Ritter was riveting, thought-provoking and opened up a whole new dimension to my diving experiences that I didn't think possible”

ERICH K RITTER, PhD

  • Behavioral scientist
  • Research Associate, University of West Florida
  • Head, SharkSchool
  • Chairman, Shark Accident Victim Network
  • Investigator, Global Shark Attack File, Shark Research Institute
  • Book Author & Public Speaker
  • World-Renowned Shark-Human Interaction Specialist

Qualification

  • 30 years of field research and applied to teach
  • Specialized in shark‐human interaction with special emphasis on accident analysis and reconstruction
  • World's first bull shark interaction site for snorkelers established in Walker's Cay, Bahamas
  • Goal-oriented education of commercial shark dive operation in the Bahamas, Azores, and the Red Sea
  • Courses in applied shark‐human interaction taught in Azores, Bahamas, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Egypt, Maldives, Mexico, South Africa

"There are no dangerous sharks - just dangerous situations.”

Understanding these situations turns a shark encounter into a truly fascinating and safe experience. In more than 20 years of scientific research and fieldwork with sharks in their habitat, Dr. Erich Ritter determined the factors that lead to dangerous situations. From these, he derived ‘easy to apply shark‐human interaction concepts’ which allow any swimmer, snorkeler or diver to stay safe and awestruck in the vicinity of sharks at all times.

SharkSchool

SharkSchool was established more than 15 years ago in Miami, Florida as the educational division of the Shark Education & Research Center in the Bahamas. Its main purpose is to bring humans closer to sharks, focusing on how to interact with them and to emphasize their crucial position and importance in the marine realm. To provide water sport, nature and shark enthusiasts the possibility to have safe and truly fascinating encounters with various shark species all over the world. The two main pillars of SharkSchool are:

Ongoing scientific research on

  • Shark behavior
  • Shark accidents

Providing water sport, nature and shark enthusiasts the possibility for

  • Safe and truly fascinating encounters with various shark species all over the world
  • An edutainment education on sharks in general and shark-human interaction in particular

HEAD OF SHARKSCHOOLTM AND PIONEER – ERICH K. RITTER

SharkSchoolTM is run by Erich K. Ritter. He has a Ph.D. from Zurich University in “Behavioral Ecology” and is the only professional shark‐human interaction specialist. He did his post‐doctrine at the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School. He taught field courses for students, naturalists and divers in the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, the Maldives, Egypt, Mexico, Costa Rica, South Africa, Galapagos and Hawaii and are continuously exploring new destinations for human‐shark‐encounters. He conducts his field research primarily in the Northern Abacos, the Bahamas at the "Shark Education & Research Center" (SERC).

Erich teaches divers, snorkelers, rescue swimmers and others how to interact with sharks, what to look for when entering the water and most importantly how to feel safe among sharks. He functions as a case investigator of the Shark Research Institute's GSAF (Global Shark Attack File).

He is also the chairman of SAVNTM, the Shark Accident Victim Network, and a not-for-profit organization to help shark victims. He is giving lectures worldwide and was guest on many different TV shows, including a quick appearance in the movie SharkWater (www.sharkwater.com).

Ritter's main expertise is the body language of sharks, with a major interest in shark accidents and their causes. Ritter is considered the top authority and pioneer in shark‐human interaction. He developed the first concept (ADORE‐SANE) for swimmers, divers, and snorkelers that allows safe interaction with any shark species under different conditions. He has spent the last twelve years collecting data from different shark species around the world. Besides some reef species, his primary focus is on bull sharks, lemon sharks, and white sharks. All his lectures, classes and workshops he teaches in English and German.

THE SCIENCE BEHIND SHARK‐HUMAN‐INTERACTION

SHARK BEHAVIOR / ADORE‐SANE
Erich Ritter is specialized in shark behavior. Dangerous situations are always created knowingly, unknowingly or by 3rd parties. To understand a situation is the core of every workshop taught. That is one of the main reason's why Erich Ritter developed ADORE‐SANE, the world's first and only shark‐human interaction concept to not just quantify and qualify every situation but likewise to understand the factors that influence a shark the most.

Thanks to Erich Ritter’s work, many old theories on shark behavior are proven to be outdated and simply wrong. Thus, also various inventions with a suggested shark‐repelling‐effect or common safety recommendations had been proven useless or even counter‐productive.

ACCIDENT FORENSICS
Erich Ritter is the only shark expert to recreate many of the typical accident scenarios with the respective species. His understanding of potential reasons for shark accidents opened new doors in this field of research. Many of the old theories of why sharks bite have been erased through his experiments and new ideas for accident prevention proposed.

THE EXPERIENCE OF HUMAN‐SHARK‐INTERACTION

SHARK DIVING

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EDUTAINMENT

Find out how sharks really are and clean up with the misleading picture that mass media, tragic accidents and horror movies like „Jaws“ are creating. Sharks are truly fascinating, superior predators. You will learn to interpret their body language, evaluate situations of the encounter, understand the sharks‘ social life and even their individual characteristics, personality and actual mood. Once you have started to really look at them with Erich Ritter’s background information, you will be awestruck by their beauty and perfection.

SHARK CONSERVATION

"... there is no such thing as dangerous sharks, only dangerous situations. This fact must be made public... for the sake of the animals and our children... once mankind can get rid of its fear from sharks, then sharks can be protected... the overfishing and slaughtering of sharks is one of the biggest ecological time bombs of our time and the consequences will have a devastating effect ‐ not just for nature but mankind as well… the conscious interaction with sharks is an important tool for their better understanding...”

Those who got to know sharks will want to support their conservation. By sharing his passion for sharks and by teaching every interested person about them, Erich is raising public awareness about how important sharks are for the oceans and therewith for life on this planet. His indefatigable, scientifically based advocacy for sharks is continuously creating more shark lovers and shark protectors.

SHARK SCHOOL FIJI - THE WORKSHOP
INTERACTION I & II

All workshops revolve around ADORE-SANE, the world's first and only shark-human interaction concept.

INTERACTION I
This workshop focuses on the interaction aspects of different shark species. It will be taught what to look for when facing a shark, which factor(s) influence(s) the situation the most and how to interpret an encounter. Everything learned in the classroom will also be tried and tested with and among free roaming sharks within changing situations to give a thorough introduction to different scenarios.

  • Introduction to ADORE-SANE
  • Daily in-water exercises (related to ADORE-SANE)
  • Detailed introduction in shark behavior and interaction with sharks
  • Overview of shark accidents, their analysis, and interpretation
  • Do’s & don’ts

INTERACTION II (A second level course for those who have completed INTERACTION I)
In 1996, ”Green Marine" (Global Green Marine, Inc.) established the SharkSchool in Miami, Florida. SharkSchool’s main purpose is to bring humans closer to sharks, focusing on how to interact with these animals while emphasizing their crucial position and importance in the marine realm.

SharkSchool is run by Dr. Erich K. Ritter Ph.D., a shark behaviorist, and avid conservationist. His teachings are largely based on his research in shark-human interaction where he examines factors that affect this relationship. He further analyzes incidents with sharks– erroneously labeled as ‘shark attacks’–and also recreates these scenarios to better understand the all too often misinterpreted incidents.

www.sharkschool.org.

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