Cabrillo Marine Aquarium

Virtual Discovery Lecture Series

Friday, December 3, 2021
7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

Sex in the Sea: The weird and wonderful ways animals reproduce in the ocean, and why that matters

Dr. Marah J. Hardt, OceanInk LLC

Let’s Talk About Sex …and Sustainability of the Sea

Sex in the sea is wet, wild, and also really important. From the elaborate mating rituals of armored lobsters to full-moon sex parties of grouper, each strategy is finely tuned to suit the lifestyle and location of a species. For hundreds of millions of years, this salty symphony of sex has ensured the big blue sea stays bountiful year after year…until now. Believe it or not, over the last century or so, we’ve begun to interrupt these intimate acts of the deep, with far reaching consequences not just for horny halibut, but for us as well.

Marine scientist and storyteller, Dr. Marah J. Hardt, will present highlights from her popular science book Sex in the Sea: Our Intimate Connection with Sex-Changing Fish, Romantic Lobsters. Kinky Squid, and other Salty Erotic of the Deep. With colorful underwater photography and lively storytelling, Dr. Hardt will connect the timeless topic of sex with the timely issue of sustainable oceans. Overfishing, climate change, and ocean pollution are disrupting the creative procreation that drives the wild abundance of sea life. Hardt will introduce us to wondrous sex lives of ocean life, and help us learn why understanding these behaviors matters for how we manage our oceans.



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