Today Linda and I drove to Clearwater to go to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium
. This is a Rescue, Rehab and Release aquarium for dolphins, turtles, otters and other marine animals. I had found this facility many years ago when I researched animal rescue facilities throughout the US and marked the locations of the facilities on a US atlas. Linda saw my notation and decided it was a good place to go for a day trip, while in Florida...she was right. One of the residents at CMA is "Winter", a bottlenose dolphin who came to the facility when she was very young and was found entangled in a crab trap. Hear about Winter's story here. What an amazing animal and a true inspiration to everyone. Linda and I took the behind the scenes tour of the facility so we got to see where they prep the food for the animals, where they do surgery on them, the new holding tank area that is under construction and we went inside the vehicle used for strandings to see what they do when they go to rescue a turtle or dolphin. It was very interesting to hear and see what goes on behind the scenes.
This turtle was put in the tank with the first dolphin brought to CMA
for art therapy. "Sunset Sam" did a great job painting this guy !
Today's menu for the residents...sounds yummy !
This little guy is blind so he has to be hand fed....he also likes the body rubs.
Time to play and exercise..
View from the aquariums' parking lot....
As if that wasn't great enough, we also went to the bird sanctuary a little ways from the aquarium....more on that tomorrow.