ORLANDO, Fla., April 27, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment (SEA) and world-renowned marine artist and conservationist Guy Harvey today announced a new partnership focused on ocean health and the plight of sharks in the wild. The two organizations will partner to raise awareness of these important issues, and collaborate on science and research to increase understanding of how to better protect these critical predators and their habitats.
"SeaWorld is committed to raising awareness of the plight of sharks in the wild and the oceans they live in. As part of our commitment that we made in March of this year, we will put meaningful dollars, research and man hours towards reducing this troubling trend," Joel Manby, President and CEO of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment said. "The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation and Guy Harvey Research Institute have been front and center in this effort for years, and we are proud to open a new chapter in those efforts today."
Research indicates upwards of 100 million sharks are killed every year in the global shark fishery. The Guy Harvey Research Institute estimates 73 million per year for the fin trade alone. Members of SeaWorld's animal care team recently joined a Guy Harvey Research Institute shark tagging expedition off the coast of Mexico, tagging six Mako sharks over the course of four days. Those tagged sharks will be followed by students and researchers at Guy Harvey's Institute at Nova Southeastern University, and can be viewed by the public online at www.GHRItracking.org.
"The partnership with SeaWorld will ensure our ocean conservation messages and our efforts to protect Mako sharks reach a broader audience here in the United States and worldwide," said renowned scientist, marine wildlife artist and conservationist Dr. Guy Harvey. "We are thrilled to gain the support of the SeaWorld team as we continue to bring educational initiatives and conservation efforts to life."
In addition to the science and research efforts, Guy Harvey and SeaWorld will also work together to increase public awareness about ocean health and the need for shark conservation. SeaWorld's new roller coaster, Mako, will be a major platform for this effort. In the queue lines for the new coaster, guests will be educated and entertained through digital platforms that provide access to the real science of sharks in the wild and ways they can help protect them with Guy Harvey himself as the host. Elsewhere in the realm guests will have access to real-time shark tracking and videos from Guy Harvey's vast library of compelling and visually stunning shark expeditions. Interactive materials will also share information about shark conservation and ways to get involved.
Guy Harvey will also commission an array of exclusive paintings and apparel, which will be available only at SeaWorld. SeaWorld will donate a portion of the proceeds from the sale of such items directly to the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation. The world-renowned artist will be making park appearances, including the painting of a signature Mako mural for the attraction launch.
About SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc.
SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: SEAS) is a leading theme park and entertainment company providing experiences that matter, and inspiring guests to protect animals and the wild wonders of our world. The company is one of the world's foremost zoological organizations and a global leader in animal welfare, training, husbandry and veterinary care. The company collectively cares for what it believes is one of the largest zoological collections in the world and has helped lead advances in the care of animals. The company also rescues and rehabilitates marine and terrestrial animals that are ill, injured, orphaned or abandoned, with the goal of returning them to the wild. The SeaWorld® rescue team has helped more than 27,000 animals in need over the last 50 years.
SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. owns or licenses a portfolio of recognized brands including SeaWorld, Busch Gardens® and Sea Rescue®. Over its more than 50-year history, the company has built a diversified portfolio of 11 destination and regional theme parks that are grouped in key markets across the United States, many of which showcase its one-of-a-kind zoological collection of over 800 species of animals. The company's theme parks feature a diverse array of rides, shows and other attractions with broad demographic appeal which deliver memorable experiences and a strong value proposition for its guests.
Copies of this and other news releases as well as additional information about SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. can be obtained online at www.seaworldentertainment.com. Shareholders and prospective investors can also register to automatically receive the company's press releases, SEC filings and other notices by e-mail by registering at that website.
About Guy Harvey
Guy Harvey is a unique blend of artist, scientist, diver, angler, conservationist and explorer, fiercely devoted to his family and his love of the sea. His childhood passion for the ocean and its living creatures not only inspired him to draw, but fueled a burning interest that prompted a formal education in marine science. Having graduated with honors in Marine Biology from Aberdeen University in Scotland in 1977, Guy returned home to Jamaica to resume his education, earning his Ph.D. from the University of the West Indies in 1984. Though he gave up a budding career as a marine biologist for that of a highly acclaimed artist, Guy has continued his relentless pursuit to unravel the mysteries of the sea, traveling the world to better understand the habits and habitats of the marine wildlife he paints. For more information, please visit www.guyharvey.com.
About the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation
The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation is an organization of philanthropists, conservationists, scientists and educators that emphasize sensible strategies for promoting ocean conservation and the development of the next generation of marine scientists. The foundation funds scientific research and educational programs developed by universities, colleges, institutes and nonprofit organizations.
About the Guy Harvey Research Institute
The GHRI is a scientific research organization based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. at the Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography of Nova Southeastern University, minutes from coral reefs and popular fishing grounds. GHRI was established in 1999 as a collaboration between the renowned marine artist Dr. Guy Harvey and NSU's Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography to assume a leadership role in providing the scientific information necessary to understand and save the world's fish resources and biodiversity from drastic, ongoing declines. GHRI is one of only a handful of private organizations dedicated exclusively to expanding the scientific knowledge base needed for effective conservation of fish populations and maintenance of fish biodiversity.
SOURCE SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment