Tag Archive | Christmas

In the Florida Keys and a Winter and Hope Update

Here's a kiss to the Keys saying "This is the life".

Here’s a kiss to the Keys saying “This is the life”.

Hey there everyone,

This is Jenna writing finally, after a while. I have been very busy lately due to online college work and my current internship at a Theater of the Sea in Islamorada, FL which has slowed me down a lot recently to the point where I no longer had anytime to blog about my experiences. So, now that my finals for the semester are out of the way, I can finally get to blog about how things have been going down here in the Florida Keys.

Theater of the Sea

I personally love my internship at Theater of the Sea. So, far, I have had the best five weeks of my life getting my foot in the animal training field through some hands-on experience with the dolphins, sea lions, and rays at the park. So far, I have done some water-work training sessions with the dolphins and a sea lion named Bella as well as a couple of feeding sessions here and there with the sting rays at stingray beach. In addition, I have been assisting a lot with getting music ready for the shows and picking out volunteers to meet the animals up-close in person. Some of these people have even asked me to picked them to meet the animals too like this one grandmother from France who came to the Keys with her young grandson because he wanted to see a dolphin. When she came up to me, I was so touched by her story how it was her grandson’s dream to meet a real dolphin that I had to pick him to meet one and so, after I fulfilled his wish, I picked him for a second time to toss rings to Wilbur the sea lion and believe me, he wowed the crowed by throwing the ring from a far distance. It felt so good granting some kid his life-long wish because this is the kind of stuff that most people may never get the chance to do and also, it was Christmas and I was taught for a long time that Christmas is not really about the presents you get under the Christmas tree, it’s more about caring for those who really want to be cared for.

Winter had been paired with Hope (Photo by Bay News 9)

Winter had been paired with Hope (Photo by Bay News 9)

Winter has Finally been Paired with Hope

With a lot of delight, I am very happy to day that Tampa Bay’s Bay News 9 has confirmed that Winter the dolphin has finally been paired with Hope almost one year after Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s youngest bottlenose dolphin was first moved to the Winter Zone from the Dolphin Zone where she had been residing since the winter of 2011. The CMA staff is reporting that Winter and Hope have been getting along very well and the introduction has been a huge success. Congrats to Winter and Hope and a very successful introduction.

Theater of the Sea Family Portrait

Theater of the Sea Family Portrait

Back to Life in the Keys….

Since my internship is a paid one, I have decided that I will be using all my current paychecks to pay to have my SCUBA lessons be done down here in Key Largo since I found out that it’s very expensive to get certified up north while it’s cheaper down here. Plus, I have always wanted to go scuba diving in Florida’s coral reefs  and see the ship wrecks that are down there. This would mean I would have stay in the Keys long after my internship ends and that would also mean finding a job down here too so that I would be able to help pay for the condo my mother and I are renting at the Moon Bay condominiums in Key Largo.  I am so glad that I’m spending the holidays in paradise because I don’t have to worry too much about the cold weather. Any way, I hope you all are having a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Merry Christmas everyone,


Merry Christmas from the Florida Keys.

Merry Christmas from the Florida Keys.



Merry Christmas Everyone

Even Winter says Merry Christmas too (photo of Winter was taken by a CMA photographer and the card was made on pizap.com)

Merry Christmas Everyone and may you all have a Happy New Year too. I hope you all got the chance to see Winter and her friends at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium this year and may you all get that same chance next year too.

A Whale of a Holiday Shopping Spree: Ideal Gifts for the Sea Life Lover in Your Life

Stuffed animals like this ever adorable Winter Doll, make great gifts for kids and young adults of all ages.

Since the Holiday season has just arrived, I decided that I’m going to write an entry about some ideal gifts that the ultimate sea life lover in your life. Below is a video that talks about some reading and video suggestions for the  aspiring marine mammal trainers in your life:

Here are some links to purchase or check out some of the books and DVDs mentioned in this video which talks about suggestive reading and viewing on animal training and care.

Wild Careers: Working with Animals: http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Wild-Careers/Loran-Wlodarski/e/9781893698086

Dolphin Discovery: Bottlenose Dolphin Training and Interaction:http://www.amazon.com/Dolphin-Discovery-Bottlenose-Interaction-Education/dp/1…

Starting Your Career as a Marine Mammal Trainer:http://www.amazon.com/Starting-Career-Marine-Mammal-Trainer/dp/0971985324/ref…

Lads Before the Wind : Diary of a Dolphin Trainer :http://www.amazon.com/Lads-Before-Wind-Dolphin-Trainer/dp/1890948047/ref=pd_b…

A Dolphin In Front of Your: A Guide to Starting Your Career as a Dolphin Trainer: http://www.amazon.com/Dolphin-Front-You-Pete-Davey/dp/097672913X/ref=sr_1_1?i…

Believe: http://shamushop.com/SeaWorld-Believe-Show-DVD/M/B003E13022.htm

Celebrating Dolphins: http://shamushop.com/SeaWorld-Celebrating-Dolphins-DVD/M/B00443QKUI.htm

Winter: The Dolphin that Could:http://store.seewinter.com/seewinter.com/dvddocumentary.html

The Saving a Species DVDs are all available at the gift shops at SeaWorld Parks. If you buy them at the Animal Connections Conservation Center at SeaWorld San Antonio, or at a gift shop at any one of parks, the proceeds made from the purchase goes to the SeaWorld Busch Gardens Conservation Fund.

P.S., if you are interested in ordering the SeaWorld publication material, via, SeaWorld’s Education Department, learn more at:http://www.seaworld.org/education-resources/publications/how-to-order.htm

Gift certificates for animal encounters with sharks, fish, penguins and marine mammals at any facility such as Clearwater Marine Aquarium, SeaWorld, Discovery Cove, and Mystic Aquarium make great holiday gifts for the ultimate adventurer on your list.

For those who have friends or loved ones who want to get into dolphin biology, here are some awesome books on the topic that they will love.

"Dolphin Mysteries" focuses on the efforts to study and understand dolphin communication

Dolphin Mysteries: Unlocking the Secrets of Communication is an amazing book that focuses on the efforts of two dolphin biologists, Dr. Kathleen M. Dudzinski, and Dr. Toni Frohoff as they attempt to study and understand the secrets behind dolphin communication by studying dolphin populations in the Bahamas, Japan, and Guatemala. Over the years, they have found new ways to both understand and listen to the vocabulary and social signals of dolphins while providing a whole new scientifically accurate portrait of dolphins unlike any other the world has ever seen before. This is a must read for anyone who is interested in studying dolphin biology.

Dolphin Mysteries: Unlocking the Secrets of Communication: http://www.amazon.com/dp/0300121121?%20%20tag=thedolpcommpr-%20%2020&camp=0&creative=0&linkCode=as1&creativeASIN=030012112%20%201&adid=03VB9WH650V2PCH6PQM6&

"The Dolphin in the Mirror" is a fantastic book for anyone who is curious about dolphin intelligence and it should be ready by anyone who wants to one day work with these amazing mammals.

Dr. Diana Reiss’s The Dolphin in the Mirror is a cleaver book that focuses on her experience studying dolphin intelligence. Dr.Reiss began her work on dolphin intelligence more than 30 years ago when she worked with a young female dolphin named Circe at a small aquarium in France. A few years later in the 1980’s. She began doing several research projects with a dolphin colony at Marine World USA (now known as Six Flags Discovery Kingdom), and has even went on to work on a successful self-recognition project with two male dolphins at the  New York Aquarium in the 1990’s. Today, she is the director of National Aquarium’s dolphin research program, a member of two zoological organizations, and a professor at three colleges. She is also involved in the effort to stop the drive fisheries in Japan. Resiss’ years of observations and research done on dolphins will have you continue to appreciate these amazing animals.

The Dolphin in the Mirror: http://www.amazon.com/Dolphin-Mirror-Exploring-Minds-Saving/dp/0547445725

"To Touch A Wild Dolphin" is an incredible story about discovering the social lives of Australia's Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin population.

Below is a review video I did on To Touch A Wild Dolphin, a classic memoir by Rachel Smolker that tells the the true story of a young researcher named Rachel Smolker, who in the 1980’s started a long-term study on a population of Indo-Pacifc bottlenose dolphins in Monkey Mia in Shark Bay, Australia. It is a classic story about dolphins that is a must read for anyone who loves dolphins, and marine mammal research.

To Touch a Wild Dolphin: http://www.amazon.com/Touch-Wild-Dolphin-Discovery-Intelligent/dp/0385491778

If your friend or loved one has jewelry on their Christmas list, then Aelia Petro's animal necklaces make gifts for those who love animal-themed jewelry. Beautiful Winter Dolphin necklace Aelia. Visit her site at: http://www.etsy.com/shop/ArtByAelia?ref=seller_info

All the orca lovers on your list will love orca adoptions through the Whale Museum's killer whale adoption program. Each whale adoption comes with a certificate, photo, biography, genealogy and updates on how their whale and his/her pod is doing along with booklet on Southern Resident killer whales, and more.

All of these gift ideas and more can be found on:







Hope these gift suggestions make your Holiday shopping experience a good one and Happy Holidays.