Tag Archive | Winter the Dolphin

Dolphin Tale Inspired Poem by South African Poet S.C. Duvenhage Pypers

During it’s theatrical run, “Dolphin Tale” was a Number 1 Box Office Hit in the United States, Canada, and Brazil. (Photo of Winter and Sawyer (Nathan Gamble) is a screenshot from “Dolphin Tale).

Since the movie Dolphin Tale was first released last fall, there has been a lot of feedback from people everywhere who said that not only were they in love with the movie and it’s storyline, but also, they were in love with Winter herself. Last night, I was checking The Winter Dolphin Chronicles facebook page when I was a posting from a South African poet named S.C. Duvenhage Pypers who wrote this beautiful poem about the story of Winter the dolphin and the people who rescued her in the movie. Her poem is titled A Dolphin Named Winter and it’s inspired by Dolphin Tale and I am more than happy to share this poem with all of you.

A Dolphin Named Winter……By S.C. Duvenhage Pypers

Stranded you were on the beach the ocean

 too far to reach caught in tight strings of rope

your body unable to cope Alone, scared and in pain

but hope you kept remain a little boy came helping you

and connected with you so true

Sick you were and sore and to eat you

didnt want to anymore but once again

the boy came through and with heart and

soul your bond grew You lost your tail and could not swim

but that did not keep you from gaining a win you taught yorself

to swim and move you were happy, friendly and with new groove

But then again the sad news came you will die if swimming remain

your heart was strong and the boy faught long A prosthetic tail you

would gain there will be sunshine after this at first it did not go

so well but given up was not about to sell The boy knew what

was wrong and got it fixed before too long now you’ve got a

brand new tail and into hearts of many you sail Winter, you

are our friend you are a dolphin angel to the end you

 are my inspiration and i now have a new destination.

Winter i’m swimming with youin my dreams… 😉

written by S.C.Duvenhage Pypers now after watching Dolphin Tale

Thank you very much Ms.Pypers for writing this beautiful poem about Winter. It’s just beautiful.

Hope you all have a great morning everyone,



To Teach A Dolphin How To Act-Getting Winter Ready for “Dolphin Tale”

It took a village to teach a dolphin named Winter how to act

As a lot of you may know, Winter, a bottlenose dolphin who resides at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium in Clearwater, FL will be playing herself in the upcoming film Dolphin Tale which will be released in theaters on September 23rd, 2011. The trainers at CMA had trained all the dolphins, including Winter, in the same matter that SeaWorld trainers would train their animals for behaviors for upcoming animal shows.  These behaviors were all established through positive reinforcement and desensitization.

Positive reinforcement-Trainers ask the animal through hand signals, imitation and whistle (bridge) to perform a behavior, and reward them when they perform it. Nothing was forced during this process.

To prepare Winter for her interactions with movie equipment, props, scenes, and actors, the trainers used desensitization-the process of slowly exposing Winter to the items and situations so that she would then, be able to become familiar and comfortable with them. In fact, all bright lights, groups of people, and large cameras would always remain close by in order to help get used to such interactions when filming the movie. For example:

  • The staff has fashioned a fake “camera” made of gas cans and raised and lowered it on a fake boom (long stick that usually has a microphone attached) over her pool.
  • Volunteers took shifts holding reflective boards to familiarize her to the bright lights.
  • A large “blue screen”, similar to what weather people use, was placed in the pool.
The trick to desensitization is to go slowly with the training, pairing, every encounter with positive reinforcement/reward, and to make it fun! This way, the animal feels comfortable with the new experience and can enjoy these exciting interactions like a game.
Some of the new behaviors taught to Winter specifically for her movie role include:
  • Tossing bottles in the air
  • Responding to signals given by the actors

Winter, resting on her favorite movie prop, the floating bed.

Who’s Looking Forward to A “Dolphin Tale”?

The offical poster for "Dolphin Tale"


In case you are all wondering, Winter’s upcoming movie Dolphin Tale, it will be released to theaters by Warner Bros. on September 23rd, 2011 in theaters throughout both the United States, and Canada. The movie focuses on an 11-year-old-boy named Sawyer, who befriends Winter during her rehabilitation at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. From there on, Sawyer relies on his friends and family to save Winter by convincing a well-known doctor to create a prosthetic tail in order to help gain the animal’s ability to swim again.

Keep in mind that when you see one of CMA’s video presentations, the presentations will all begin with a trailer for Dolphin Tale before moving forward to the featured presentation.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to comment.