I’m talking about the Pacific White Sided Dolphin. During a recent visit to the Vancouver Aquarium I had the opportunity to see first-hand how amazing these marine mammals truly are.
This isn’t the first I’ve worked with these dolphins. I actually had the opportunity to train Sea World San Antonio’s six White Sided Dolphins during my internship there back in 2006. Look how young I look!!!
These dolphins are more acrobatic than any other species of dolphin exhibited in marine parks. They can jump 30 feet in the air!!! Some trainers even believe that they are easier to work with than Bottlenose Dolphins (which can be surprisingly very aggressive).
The aquarium houses three Pacific White Sided Dolphins named Helen, Hana, and Spinnaker; ALL of which have been rescued. My favorite dolphin was Helen. She’s a 21 year old female who was rescued from a fishing net entanglement. Unfortunately her pectoral flippers had to be partially amputated.
This is one of my favorite pictures taken of a dolphin’s blowhole. This allows the animals to breathe once they reach the surface. Powerful muscles shut the blowhole while the dolphin is submerged underwater to prevent drowning.
The Vancouver Aquarium offers overhead and underwater viewing of its gorgeous dolphins. They even have educational shows where the trainers show off some of the dolphin’s behaviors. If you want to visit Helen, Hana, and Spinnaker in person please visit http://www.vanaqua.org/
***A special thanks goes out to Rosemary Pritchard who joined me on my aquarium adventure and took these amazing photos. Thanks Rosemary!!!