Bottle Nose Dolphin Adopts Whale Calf of Another Species


From a small inflatable boat in the Rangiroa atoll in French Polynesia, Pamela Carzon got her first glimpse of the “strange” trio of marine mammals she’d been told about: a bottlenose dolphin mother (Tursiops truncatus), her seven-month-old calf, and another young cetacean that was slightly smaller and looked to be not a bottlenose dolphin at all, but a melon-headed whale (Peponocephala electra). 

It was April 2015, and Carzon and a colleague at the Marine Mammal Study Group of French Polynesia, a nongovernmental organization dedicated to whale and dolphin conservation, were out for the NGO’s annual photo-ID survey, very much hoping to find animals that a former collaborator had seen while diving in the region the previous November. “[T]he sea was very calm, and there were many dolphins around,” Carzon, also a PhD student at the Centre for Island Research and Environmental Observatory (CRIOBE) in French Polynesia and the École Pratique des Hautes Études in Paris, recalls in an email to The Scientist. “It took us maybe two minutes to spot them: the dark calf was easy to spot among the bottlenose dolphins.”

DOLPHIN ADOPTION: A female bottlenose dolphin in the South Pacific has been sighted with both her own calf and another young cetacean identified as a melon-headed whale.

The mother, dubbed ID#TP25 by the researchers, was known to tolerate divers and boats, and that April day she approached the inflatable with both calves. Carzon grabbed her underwater camera and slipped into the water. “I was able to get good underwater footage and to sex both calves,” she says. ID#TP25’s natural calf was a female; the second calf was male. “I also noticed that both were ‘gently’ pushing each other [in order] to remain under the adult female’s abdomen” in so-called infant position. Continued observation over the following months revealed that the dolphin mom was nursing the foreign calf, whose species ID remains to be confirmed with genetic testing, and otherwise treated him as one of her own.

Carzon had been studying the bottle-nose dolphin community inhabiting the northern part of Rangiroa atoll for a decade and knew that the cetaceans had a history of bringing young animals of other species into their group. In 1996, researchers observed a newborn spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostrisswimming in the slipstream of an adult male bottlenose—a behavior known as echelon swimming and a common interaction between mothers and calves. Scientists also regularly spotted a juvenile spinner dolphin over the next two years, often with a particular adult female bottlenose, Carzon says, although it’s not clear whether it was the same individual they saw as a new born. Then, in November 1998, a new born melon-headed whale spent a few weeks in the area and was filmed swimming in echelon position with the same female bottlenose that had associated with the young spinner dolphin.

More recently, another adult female bottlenose in the same community has twice been seen with young of a different species. In January 2011, she was spotted with a neonate spinner dolphin for a few days, and in February 2018, she was photographed with a new born Fraser’s dolphin (Lagenodelphis hosei), which swam alongside her in echelon position. With such behaviours apparently relatively common within this social group, ID#TP25 may have picked up a thing or two from her conspecific companions, speculates Carzon. “The evidence that bottlenose dolphins are capable of imitation is very strong,” she says. “[S]ocially transmitted ideas or practices from cultural models may have influenced [ID#TP25’s] behaviour.

The adoption was stable, lasting more than two years.

As is the case with most animal adoptions in the wild, how the mother bottlenose came to acquire the melon-headed whale calf is unknown. The calf’s natural mother may have died, or the bottlenose dolphin group may have “kidnapped” it, a behavior that was once observed in a dolphin group in the Bay of Gibraltar, Carzon notes. Whatever scenario landed the outside calf in the care of dolphin ID#TP25, the adoption was stable, lasting more than two years. ID#TP25’s naturalcalf disappeared by early 2016, suggesting it died or weaned early, possibly joining another social group.

There is only one other published case of intraspecies adoption by animals in the wild: for about 14 months in the early 2000s, researchers documented the integration of an infant marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) into a group of capuchin monkeys (Cebus libidinosus) in woodland savanna of central Brazil. A female monkey that the researchers had thought was pregnant but who perhaps lost her own baby cared for the infant marmoset, carrying it on her back and appearing to nurse it. “It was amazing because when she appeared, she was tiny tiny tiny,” says Patrícia Izar, a primate ethologist at the University of São Paulo in Brazil who observed the adoption. “She was really a new born, and she survived.” Izar says she was particularly astonished because she knew that some groups of capuchin monkeys eat young marmosets. Care for the young animal was eventually assumed by another female capuchin, and all group members appeared to tolerate the marmoset’s presence.

As for why intraspecies adoptions do—rarely—occur, wildlife conservation professor Robert Young of the University of Salford in the UK suggests that animals may not recognize that they’re caring for young of another species. In the case of the dolphins, the presumed melon-headed whale is similar in size to the adoptive mother’s own bottlenose dolphin calf, and the dolphins have not evolved a strong ability to differentiate their own young from those of another species. “There’s good reason to think it’s just an identification problem,” says Young, who says he has observed a handful of intraspecies adoptions among black-fronted titi monkeys (Callicebus nigrifrons) in Brazil.

The high levels of oxytocin coursing through mammalian mothers’ bodies and the abundance of resources are also likely to be relevant factors. Indeed, in the case of the capuchin group that took in a marmoset baby, Izar and her colleagues had been providing coconuts to study the animals’ use of stones to crack the fruit open, meaning that the monkeys had plenty of food to eat, and so looking after additional young might have been less costly. Interspecies adoptions are also much more common among domestic and captive animals, for whom food is often plentiful, than they are in the wild, Young notes. “If you’ve got a lactating female dog, you can just about get it to rear any other mammal.”

Documented cases of interspecies adoption among the Rangiroa dolphins and Brazilian monkeys “shows that it’s not impossible,” says Izar. “I think that in time we will have other cases in the wild.”



creds to: https://www.the-scientist.com/

How to avoid behaviour deterioration.

Sometimes we trainers get caught up in everyday distractions, other tasks and do not fully see what is going on, especially if you are a supervisor or have many other responsibilities. We may not realize that behaviour quality is diminishing. When this happens always rely upon your Operant Conditioning knowledge, many trainers underestimate its power to keep their animal responding with fluency ensuring the behaviour is under stimulus control.

Dolphins are usually sedentary animals; they also pick up unwanted behaviour habits along the way and if the trainer does not remind them and review it, there is a possibility of behaviours deteriorating little by little.

During sessions, programs or the daily routine it is easy to ignore little signs that show that we are compromising the quality of our animal’s behaviour.

A distracted trainer runs the risk of their animal eliciting unwanted behaviour, such as superstitious behaviours, latency responses and other unwanted behaviour.

The most beautiful and natural characteristics of dolphins are their intelligence, synchronicity, acrobatic and their fast instinct, which have become symbols of mysticism and elegance for us humans.

Trainers should take advantage of this and keep behaviours shaped and under criteria to give the animal a clear indication that the behaviour is right. Shaping their behaviour whilst using positive reinforcement is the best way to achieve this.

If your animal has performed a good session, do not take it for granted, take the opportunity to closely interact with your animal and build up trust by giving your animal the reward, love and affection they deserve. Keeping behaviours under control will help to avoid accidents.

You may find some who love to manipulate information and advertise our animals are in an unfair environment and that our animals are not feed if they don’t perform…make sure you do not fuel their argument, ensure your animals are fed during training sessions and during show or interaction programs. When your animals are performing at their best, take the opportunity to give them most of the diet designated for that session as a big reward, remember positive reinforcement!

Food management is simply ensuring proper dietary allocation throughout the day, just like us humans, having breakfast, lunch and supper at certain times throughout the day.

With our practice of positive reinforcement (ignoring unwanted behaviour) which covers all area of animals under human care, we make sure our animals are content and have a stress-free environment.

Case study tip

One way you can avoid and spot behaviour deterioration is to ask someone to record your session, so you can objectively look at the animal’s behaviour in playback; you can spot your mistakes also and improve your technique. As a supervisor, you could record a trainer’s session without their knowledge, so they do not have the opportunity to alter what they usually do. This should be constructive not negative, remember positive reinforcement works for humans too!

Trainers often don’t realise until it is pointed out by another trainer. A good trainer always knows when the animal is content and responding excellent, by the animal eliciting extra excitement and cooperation during their interaction.

Bottlenose Dolphin Adopts Whale Calf of Another Species

Interspecies adoptions are rare, but it’s not the first time this population of dolphins in French Polynesia has attempted it.

From a small inflatable boat in the Rangiroa atoll in French Polynesia, Pamela Carzon got her first glimpse of the “strange” trio of marine mammals she’d been told about: a bottlenose dolphin mother (Tursiops truncatus), her seven-month-old calf, and another young cetacean that was slightly smaller and looked to be not a bottlenose dolphin at all, but a melon-headed whale (Peponocephala electra). 

It was April 2015, and Carzon and a colleague at the Marine Mammal Study Group of French Polynesia, a nongovernmental organization dedicated to whale and dolphin conservation, were out for the NGO’s annual photo-ID survey, very much hoping to find animals that a former collaborator had seen while diving in the region the previous November. “[T]he sea was very calm, and there were many dolphins around,” Carzon, also a PhD student at the Center for Island Research and Environmental Observatory (CRIOBE) in French Polynesia and the École Pratique des Hautes Études in Paris, recalls in an email to The Scientist. “It took us maybe two minutes to spot them: the dark calf was easy to spot among the bottlenose dolphins.”

DOLPHIN ADOPTION: A female bottlenose dolphin in the South Pacific has been sighted with both her own calf and another young cetacean identified as a melon-headed whale.

The mother, dubbed ID#TP25 by the researchers, was known to tolerate divers and boats, and that April day she approached the inflatable with both calves. Carzon grabbed her underwater camera and slipped into the water. “I was able to get good underwater footage and to sex both calves,” she says. ID#TP25’s natural calf was a female; the second calf was male. “I also noticed that both were ‘gently’ pushing each other [in order] to remain under the adult female’s abdomen” in so-called infant position. Continued observation over the following months revealed that the dolphin mom was nursing the foreign calf, whose species ID remains to be confirmed with genetic testing, and otherwise treated him as one of her own.

Carzon had been studying the bottle-nose dolphin community inhabiting the northern part of Rangiroa atoll for a decade and knew that the cetaceans had a history of bringing young animals of other species into their group. In 1996, researchers observed a newborn spinner dolphin (Stenella longirostrisswimming in the slipstream of an adult male bottlenose—a behavior known as echelon swimming and a common interaction between mothers and calves. Scientists also regularly spotted a juvenile spinner dolphin over the next two years, often with a particular adult female bottlenose, Carzon says, although it’s not clear whether it was the same individual they saw as a newborn. Then, in November 1998, a newborn melon-headed whale spent a few weeks in the area and was filmed swimming in echelon position with the same female bottlenose that had associated with the young spinner dolphin.

More recently, another adult female bottlenose in the same community has twice been seen with young of a different species. In January 2011, she was spotted with a neonate spinner dolphin for a few days, and in February 2018, she was photographed with a newborn Fraser’s dolphin (Lagenodelphis hosei), which swam alongside her in echelon position. With such behaviors apparently relatively common within this social group, ID#TP25 may have picked up a thing or two from her conspecific companions, speculates Carzon. “The evidence that bottlenose dolphins are capable of imitation is very strong,” she says. “[S]ocially transmitted ideas or practices from cultural models may have influenced [ID#TP25’s] behavior.” 

As is the case with most animal adoptions in the wild, how the mother bottlenose came to acquire the melon-headed whale calf is unknown. The calf’s natural mother may have died, or the bottlenose dolphin group may have “kidnapped” it, a behavior that was once observed in a dolphin group in the

Bay of Gibraltar, Carzon notes. Whatever scenario landed the outside calf in the care of dolphin ID#TP25, the adoption was stable, lasting more than two years. ID#TP25’s naturalcalf disappeared by early 2016, suggesting it died or weaned early, possibly joining another social group.

There is only one other published case of intraspecies adoption by animals in the wild: for about 14 months in the early 2000s, researchers documented the integration of an infant marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) into a group of capuchin monkeys (Cebus libidinosus) in woodland savanna of central Brazil. A female monkey that the researchers had thought was pregnant but who perhaps lost her own baby cared for the infant marmoset, carrying it on her back and appearing to nurse it. “It was amazing because when she appeared, she was tiny tiny tiny,” says Patrícia Izar, a primate ethologist at the University of São Paulo in Brazil who observed the adoption. “She was really a newborn, and she survived.” Izar says she was particularly astonished because she knew that some groups of capuchin monkeys eat young marmosets. Care for the young animal was eventually assumed by another female capuchin, and all group members appeared to tolerate the marmoset’s presence.

As for why intraspecies adoptions do—rarely—occur, wildlife conservation professor Robert Young of the University of Salford in the UK suggests that animals may not recognize that they’re caring for young of another species. In the case of the dolphins, the presumed melon-headed whale is similar in size to the adoptive mother’s own bottlenose dolphin calf, and the dolphins have not evolved a strong ability to differentiate their own young from those of another species. “There’s good reason to think it’s just an identification problem,” says Young, who says he has observed a handful of intraspecies adoptions among black-fronted titi monkeys (Callicebus nigrifrons) in Brazil.

The high levels of oxytocin coursing through mammalian mothers’ bodies and the abundance of resources are also likely to be relevant factors. Indeed, in the case of the capuchin group that took in a marmoset baby, Izar and her colleagues had been providing coconuts to study the animals’ use of stones to crack the fruit open, meaning that the monkeys had plenty of food to eat, and so looking after additional young might have been less costly. Interspecies adoptions are also much more common among domestic and captive animals, for whom food is often plentiful, than they are in the wild, Young notes. “If you’ve got a lactating female dog, you can just about get it to rear any other mammal.”

Documented cases of interspecies adoption among the Rangiroa dolphins and Brazilian monkeys “shows that it’s not impossible,” says Izar. “I think that in time we will have other cases in the wild.”

The adoption was stable, lasting more than two years.



sorce: https://www.the-scientist.com/

How Can I Make a Difference in The World as a Dolphin Behaviourist?

Taking the opportunity in this information age, there is no better time to educate others about this exciting but sometines controversial topic.

Help educate those who do not have any idea of how we train dolphins and explain proper techniques that are enriching and caring.

There are some people out there, who think training a dolphin is something negative, here we try to help aviod common misunderstandings and shock those who thought they knew about this subject.

For instance, it may be surprising to some to know that the technique used to train dolphins is the same technique used  in school to teach children at school.

Positive Reinforcement/Operant Conditioning

Apart from my extensive years of experience being a spetialist in marine mammal training behaviours, I have adquired teahcing qualifications that have enabled me to  work with children, within national education schools in England, UK. I have used positive reinforcement to modify unwanted behaviour in countless children, many also having learning desabilities, with great success.

I expereinced that edutaional staff, who had excellent teaching records and an experienced career in teaching, had given up on these children ever being helped fully. They did not have the right knowledge or resources to correct certain kinds of behaviour. I took up the challenge to improve their behaviour and had fantastic results, removing unwanted behaviour completely. Because I focused on positive reinforcement, I  could target my actions specifically and positively modify the childs behaviour. This encouraged them to learn on a more positive way, especially those with learning desabilities children. I corrected behaviours using operant conditioning methods, always rewarding wanted behaviour positively and being careful never to punish, but divert, suggest ways forward and show the merit of good behaviour or effort.

A couple years ago I was invited to create the first FaceBook group about dolphin training, Dolphin Trainers of the Caribbean. I realised whilst doing educational programs for this group, that I would like to expand this help in the future. I wanted to educate those who lacked knowledge in the dolphin training world. I created my own group Via Dolphin. One of the main reasons and the greatest joy of this group, is seeing the posibility of making a difference to the lives and careers of trainers all over the world. I wanted to give the opportunity to anyone interested in learning how to train a dolphin. I would show them how this can be achieved in a happy and positive environment, which is then not only the best way to care for the  dolphins under human care, but gives joy and enrichment to both dolphins, trainers and lovers of dolphins alike.

So to recap on the reducation regarding any negative attitudes towards dolphin training, I hope to educate and inform those animal lovers, who think that training dolphins is not right. Dolphin under human care dolphins cannot be transferred into the wild environment, since most have never lived as wild dolphins and the would not survive or be happy to leave their only known environment, where they have food, health care and enrichment amongst familiar dolphins. To try to ensure their environment is the very best it can be and their lives are the most enriched they can be is my goal. Intelligent open-minded people will see that there is nothing negative about training an animal positively, whether it is a dolphin, a sea lion, monkey, hourse, dog, tiger or a bird.

I understand there are people that believe dolphins within human care, are treated very bad and that they are mistreated by the facilities. I aknowledge some problems may be out there, but to address this, my information, help and training is designed to educate and help improve all facilities and trainers environments. It must also be ackowledged that negative misinformation and manipulated propaganda, also exists to confuse and misguide, so our message is one of factual contant, proven techniques and explainations of positve reinforcement and positive enrichment approach at all times.

Many years ago, there was not enough information for trainers and their techniques left a lot to be desired. Today there is no such excuse, research studies scientificaly prove that positive training is the best and most effective technique for teaching and enrichment of all living life, animals as well as humans.

Animals and humans learn best whilst palying and having fun, they don’t even notice they are learning or training because it is enjoyable and is based on trust.

No-one should be deprived of the opportunity to learn and providing material for all animal lovers, to understand what a positive and enriching experience the proper  training techniques can provide, will hopefully help us all to live together in a much more positive way.

Discover why whales get stranded

A new study reported in the journal Current Biology on February 24 offers some of the first evidence that grey whales might depend on a magnetic sense to find their way through the ocean. This evidence comes from the discovery that whales are more likely to strand on days when there are more sunspots.

Sunspots are of interest because they are also linked to solar storms — sudden releases of high-energy particles from the sun that have the potential to disrupt magnetic orientation behaviuor when they interact with Earth’s magnetosphere. But what’s unique about the new study, according to the researchers, is that they were able to explore how a solar storm might cause whales to strand themselves.

“Is it that the solar storms are pushing the magnetic field around and giving the whales incorrect information — for example, the whale thinks it is on 4th Street, but it is actually on 8th?” asks Jesse Granger of Duke University. “Or is it that the solar storms are messing up the receptor itself — the whale thinks it is on 4th Street, but has just gone blind?

“We show that the mechanism behind the relationship between solar storms and grey whales, if it is an effect on a magnetic sensor, is likely caused by disruption to the sense itself, not inaccurate information. So, to put this back into the earlier metaphor, the big secondary finding of this paper is that it is possible that the reason the whales are stranding so much more often when there are solar storms is because they have gone blind, rather than that their internal GPS is giving them false information.”

Granger says her interest in long-distance migrations stems in part from her own personal tendency to get lost, even on her way to the grocery store. She wanted to explore how some animals use magnetoreception to navigate by looking at incidents when navigation went terribly wrong.

“I hypothesized that by looking at patterns in the spacing and timing of incidents where an animal was unable to navigate properly, we could better understand the sense as a whole,” Granger says.

She and her colleagues studied 186 live stranding of the grey whale (Eschrichtius robustus). The data showed those stranding occurred significantly more often on days with high sunspot counts than on randomly chosen days. On days with a high sunspot count, the chance of a stranding more than doubled.

Further study showed that stranding happened more often on days with a high solar radio flux index, as measured from Earth, than on randomly chosen days. On days with high RF noise, the likelihood of stranding was more than four times greater than on randomly selected days.

Much to Granger’s surprise, they found no significant increase in stranding on days with large deviations in the magnetic field. Altogether, the findings suggest that the increased incidence of stranding on days with more sunspots is explained by a disruption of whales’ magnetoreceptive sensor, rather than distortion of the geomagnetic field itself.

“I really thought that the cause of the stranding was going to be inaccurate information,” Granger said. “When those results came up negative, I was flummoxed. It wasn’t until one of my co-authors mentioned that solar storms also produce high amounts of radio-frequency noise, and I remembered that radio-frequency noise can disrupt magnetic orientation, that things finally started to click together.”

Granger says it’s important to keep in mind that this isn’t the only cause of stranding. There are still many other things that could cause a whale to strand, such as mid-frequency naval sonar.

Granger now plans to conduct a similar analysis for several other species of whales on several other continents to see if this pattern exists on a more global scale. She also hopes to see what sort of information this broader picture of stranding can offer for our understanding of whales’ magnetic sense.

Source: https://www.sciencedaily.com/

Image: https://abcnews.go.com/

The most effective way to become a Dolphin Trainer

What does a dolphin trainer do?

They create and modify dolphin behaviour in stages by teaching them to associate signals with the desired behaviour. With experience, trainers can assist vets when basic procedures need to be performed to promote and maintain the dolphin’s health.

What courses are available?

Until now, the only way you could gain any practical knowledge, was to attend a short course which lasted between three to ten days, at a dolphin facility. The average cost of these courses is around $1,500 plus your travel costs. These courses are, in my view, too short to gain any meaningful understanding of training techniques and only basic signals are taught. They do provide an opportunity to handle a dolphin, but you can experience this at a fraction of the price in a trainer for a day experience. These courses will not teach you all you need to know and certainly they will not enable you to train behaviours from scratch and being able to understand Operant Conditioning properly.

What does the Via Dolphin course offer?

Firstly, let me just get one thing clear, if you are looking for a course that will result in a certification or qualification that would enable you to work with dolphins, I am afraid they do not exist. Our course does provide a certificate but it is not accredited in any way, since there is no such accreditation for dolphin training.

One of the reasons why I created the course was following my years of training people to become dolphin trainers, I realised that there was no course available that would teach you all the most relevant information, to enable someone to gain knowledge as a dolphin trainer. Most employers either want trainers with some experience or they accept that beginners will not have any knowledge and they train them themselves, however they will not pass on all the required knowledge because they want to keep ahead and fear someone gaining more knowledge than them, would be a threat to them.

I realise you may be concerned, that you will not be able to simply show an employer a certificate and get a job, but the knowledge you will learn with this course, will enable you to progress faster and further once you are in a job and impress potential employers that you have completed a course that then familiarises you with vital knowledge, such as training techniques and tips which you can use from day one. Even if you have a degree in marine biology, this will not give you any real advantage as a dolphin trainer, so my course is the only method of gaining vital knowledge, tips and advice about training dolphins.

My course gives you countless tips and advice from all my years of training trainers and dolphins alike, plus what no-one wants to teach you, Operant Conditioning, which is the most successful technique in training of any sort. With step by step guides and real-life problem-solving training techniques, the course will give you what no other course or guide can offer you.

What if I am still unsure?

In my view, you should ask these questions;

  • How extensive is the course content, what will I know at the end of it?
  • What level of experience does the course provider have?
  • Will I forget what I have learnt or will I have the information to refer to always?
  • Does the course teach me from scratch to train multiple behaviours?
  • Is it value for money?

There are many companies out there offering the alternative courses to mine, but in my view, most have the same problems in common. They only last a few days and no-one can learn to become a trainer so quickly. Despite the high cost, they cannot teach you step by step, how to train multiple behaviours in a week or so. You need months of practice and during such time, being able to refer to the training course material, including helpful tips, will be essential. In my experience, all the Dolphin Trainers I have known do not want to teach you all they know, simply because they fear the completion and want to retain their position. I have no such fear, my only wish is that whilst I earn a little money from passing on my knowledge, Dolphin Trainers will be successful and dolphins will be treated better. To me everyone wins, I pass on my knowledge, you reach your full potential and fulfil your dreams of becoming a good Dolphin Trainer and the dolphin benefit from being trained positively, with love, care and attention.

What are the different stages of a Dolphin Trainers’ career?

To begin your career, you will usually start as an Assistant Trainer, assisting the Senior Trainers in all their activities. You will learn to give the most basic signals and also learn how to present different types of behaviours. You will also learn how to prepare the dolphins diet and undertake some basic tasks, within the dolphin area.

Mid-level trainers or Senior Trainers, supervise the Assistant Trainers and whilst they present and perform the programs, they may not have advanced knowledge or be able to cope with complex behavioural problems.

Supervisor Trainers are advanced trainers with extensive knowledge of training techniques and they are capable of training other trainers. They will usually have to oversee the various programs in the dolphin area and will have advanced knowledge of how to avoid and fix complex behavioural problems.

How can I reach my full potential?

There are not many trainers out there who know how to train a dolphin from scratch. Most of them know how to present a show and how to do an interactive program, by just learning the signals. To learn to train a dolphin from scratch takes many years of experience, but those who know, don’t give their secrets away.

You must plan the path ahead and set out your desired end goal; then you must know the steps or keys achievements, necessary along that path.

If your gaol is to become a great Dolphin Trainer then here is my suggestion to achieving that goal;

How can Via Dolphin help me reach the top?

I have explained why my course is different and the only course that offers step by step instructions, teaching you how to train a dolphin form scratch and many other behaviours. It also explains in detail what no other course does, Operant Conditioning. You will learn all the knowledge a trainer needs for behaviour training and its techniques. You will also learn the basics of husbandry behaviours, basic behaviour troubleshooting, how to handle a dolphin in any kind of environment and situation, manoeuvres, transportation and all aspects of animal care. Lastly it provides so many tips and secrets that no other trainer will tell you, in a format that you can keep forever, that it is without question, excellent value for money.

Is there a support community I can be part of whilst I learn?

I wanted to offer something different, something nobody else offers, a complete trainer’s knowledge guide, a community and an environment where you can develop as great trainer. I have created forums with my Facebook pages and groups, which will provide support where you will be able to learn more about dolphins. You will be able to interact with over 2,000 trainers worldwide, where you can ask any question you may have.

Via Dolphin group This is our dolphin community, which offers an interactive trainers forum of animal lovers’ trainers news and fun!

Mentoring for trainer’s page Here you can access scientific research and training videos, which will help you, improving your training techniques.

Learn how to train your dolphin group (Educational group) This is a private group where you can find information about dolphins and sea lions training, educational material and infomercials as well as videos.

If you really are interested and want to go further, to pursue your dream job all the way and you want to develop as a trainer, we will give you an amazing start…

So, if you are wondering how to start, here I offer to you a map that will help you design your path.

Follow this link to save the two steps; https://cutt.ly/viadolphinmentoring

Trainer’s Requirements Chart:  This is my example of all the necessary things you need to reach your dream job……. a great Dolphin Trainer

Your Path to Success: Once you know all the things that you need, you can plan out where you want to start and what you will do to achieve all the steps towards your dream job.

How to stop your dolphin from ignoring you

For a trainer there is nothing more annoying and frustrating than having a dolphin swimming away from the trainer during show or interactive program.

How can I do to correct this unwanted behaviour?

By practising the techniques and tips bellow it will be much easier to keep a high level of discipline and your animal will not even notice.

There is nothing more reinforcing to the trainer than having an animal interacting because your animal has chosen to do so.

Avoid making your animal to get bored or doing the same thing over and over!!

There are many techniques you can use to make your animal focus 100%. It’s all about not running out of Ideas, be active, be fun…unpredictable…variety is the key!

If you are specifically working on correcting this annoying behaviour here is one of the techniques you can use.

When the animal is about to go away, seconds before grab some fish on your hand, the animal will change its mind and comeback to you, paying more attention, when the animal have engaged send it to perform the behaviour. After doing this behaviour if the animal comeback offers an excellent reinforcement, give the animal a hole fish.

Make eye contact, give a lot of attention to your animal…Tell the animal, great response girl/boy…that’s how you suppose to respond to a cue, talk to your animal on a very exited way, share your positive vibes with your animal.

Another way of engaging is to move away from your usual spot, go to the place where the animal less expect you to go, carry the cooler with you…when the animal reaches to you and is  looking at you from the bottom, as soon as the animal is heading up to the surface inches close to the top,  ask for whatever the behaviour you would like to ask, make sure is an easy behaviour, so the is not excuses from the animal to perform, the most important is that the animal engage with you. then offer primary reinforcement (fish).

Conditioning the animal to your movements is very useful.

An excellent technique is to condition your animal when you are handling the animal and the animal keep going away or ignoring the trainer is to one clap holding a small fish at the sound let the fish drop from your hands; this could be done at any time. this will cause more attention from the animal, when the animal gets distracted, you can clap and the animal will make eye contact or comeback straight to you, the animal will be paying attention to your hands, if you clap and the animal responds right away by picking up the fish that has dropped, then you reinforce again with a handful, just for responding or coming close to  or paying attention to your hand. This technique is very discreet and its very convenient for when doing programs.

If you try hard enough to correct unwanted behaviour is also good to bear in mind and having in consideration that the animal might not be interested in doing the program, in this case you start your session as usual, as soon as your animal elicit the unwanted behaviour, switch for another animal or ask another trainer to take over your program and let your animal go.

Plan ahead before starting.…communication here is one your greatest asset and creating emergences signal for different situations among trainers and use them discreetly without others realising.

Ask another other trainer to take over as soon as you make eyes contact, raise your hand or make an emergency signal to the other trainer during program time.

Make sure you are discreate when correcting behaviours when during interaction programs.

 keeping the professionalism of your work, it will define you as a good quality trainer.

Discover How Trainers Develop Their Knowledge

Knowing the process of behaviour training procedure, is key for a trainer’s career. During your career, you cannot predict where you will be working in the future and the more you learn, hopefully the stronger your position will be as a trainer. You will find that for you to develop and to not get stuck, it is a great advantage to learn to train a behaviour from scratch (the beginning).

There is no right or wrong way of training an animal just different ways to achieve your desired goal. Knowing and developing different routes and strategies of training, will not only be good for when you get stuck, but you will actually have many different ways to explain what you need to your animal and they will understand easier and faster.

Companies have different methods and procedures, they don’t all work in the same way. Positive Reinforcement/Operant Conditioning is recognised globally as the most positive training method; therefore, companies may change their working systems, but this should not affect or change the way an animal is trained. A trainer is a teacher and each teacher havs their own technique or way of training; the most important thing is that their subject is learnt in a happy positive environment.

If you want to keep ahead of the game you must learn to train a behaviour from scratch. This will allow you to glide through problem solving/troubleshooting and succeed to become a top trainer. This is the main issue for young trainers anywhere they go, how to learn a behaviour from its beginning.

Our Dolphin Trainer Course was designed to give you this knowledge.

Trainers usually change companies during their career, to improve their career because they want more success, working for different companies makes you learn more and develop different techniques. The more you work for different companies the more possibility you have to develop, by working with different people, different systems and different animals. There is a high possibility that you might have to train an animal that has never been trained before. Being open minded is one of the most important characteristics of a trainer, this could save your career!!

One of the main reasons this website was created for trainer’s self-improvement and for

trainer’s self-development.