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Expedition Week premieres tonight, Shark Men next Sunday

Expedition Week 2011 starts tonight on the National Geographic Channel. This year, there are 13 premieres on seven straight nights, and they promise “extreme treks, new discoveries, and bold investigations” featuring topics as diverse as conservation, exotic human cultures, archaeology, geology, and maritime history. In other words, there’s plenty for science geeks like us to enjoy.

This year’s Expedition Week kicks off with “Eating With Cannibals“, which tracks author/explorer Piers Gibbons quest to find people who practice cannibalism and learn more about this practice. As a lover of foods that many consider gross, I couldn’t resist. This documentary takes places in PNG, home of the Gam’s very own William Saleu. Check it out tonight at 9:00 P.M.

Image from Hulu.com

Other premieres that might interest Southern Fried Science readers include:

  • Return of the Ghost Ship“, which shows explorers using the latest maritime archaeology technology to study a recently discovered ancient wooden shipwreck in the Baltic Sea (Wednesday at 9:00 P.M.)
  • Ben Franklin’s Pirate Fleet“, which tells the story of privateers hired by one of our founding fathers (Wednesday at 10:00 P.M.)
  • Man vs. Volcano, which follows a research expedition to the world’s largest lava lake in Africa’s largest volcano (Thursday at 10:00 P.M.)
  • Tiger Man of Africa, the story of John Varty, a man who created a wild population of tigers outside of their natural habitat. Look for an “ethical debate” on this topic soon. (Friday at 10:00 P.M.)
  • Death of a Sea Monster, which follows archaeologists as they uncover the fossilized remains of large extinct marine predators (Saturday at 9:00).

The full schedule can be found here. I’m really excited about this year’s Expedition Week, but I wish that it wasn’t two weeks before I defend my thesis. Oh well, that’s what a DVR is for.

It may also interest Southern Fried Science readers that Expedition Week 2011 is hosted by the cast of Shark Men (previously called “Expedition Great White“), whose new season starts next Sunday at 9 and 10 p.m. The first two episodes of the season deal with the original capture and injury of Junior the Great White Shark. According to the episode descriptions for “Murky Waters” and “Hot Water”,  they will also focus on the National Marine Sanctuary’s decision to grant Dr. Domeier’s team a research permit. I encourage anyone who has been following our story about Junior to tune in. Obviously this will be an edited version of events, but it should help clear up come questions that many of you have had.

Disclaimer: The National Geographic Channel provided me with DVDs featuring several of the Expedition Week  premieres, as well as other promotional materials.