Thursday, September 10, 2009
My favorite time on Saturday mornings during my weekly volunteer shift at the Aquarium of the Pacific is the hour just after the Aquarium opens and just before the majority of our guests arrive. This week’s blog includes a short point-of-view video shot last Saturday via a “volunteer-cam” in an attempt to share with you, the reader, a bit of the magic of that first hour of the day.
Thursday, September 03, 2009
“Why are the blue whales here?” is a common question I get while working on the boat. The answer I most often reply with is “They’re here because they’re feeding on krill which is a small, shrimp-like animal.” Typically the krill they eat are pretty deep, around 500 feet or so, but I always mention how on rare occasions the krill are at the surface and the blue whales will lunge feed at the surface. I’ve never seen it done … until now!
Thursday, August 27, 2009
No matter what part of the country my business travels may take me during the workweek, be it the urban maze of New York, the wilds of Alaska, the mountains of Colorado or the swamps of the Carolinas, I’ve always made it a point of getting back to Southern California in time to cover my Saturday volunteer shift at the Aquarium of the Pacific. Sometimes it’s meant taking a late red-eye flight or finding an unusual connection through tiny airports but somehow the majority of the times I’ve managed to make it back to cover my shift. In fact this month I’ve recorded my 5000th hour as a volunteer at the Aquarium.
To commemorate this personal milestone this week’s blog is a list of the top ten reasons why I’ve volunteered so many hours to the Aquarium.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
The past few weeks, we’ve been seeing a decent number of cow/calf pairs of blue whales. Just recently I got word that a calf was seen nursing! Now even though I haven’t witnessed this with blue whales myself, I did recently get to see beluga whales nursing!
Monday, August 17, 2009
As you may have heard, the Aquarium now has a young female tiger shark (Galeocerdo cuvier) on exhibit in Shark Lagoon! In honor of this groundbreaking display, I’ll be writing about the beautiful girl for my next couple blogs. Recently, I had the opportunity to be up close and personal for a Saturday morning feeding.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
One of my newer duties at the Aquarium of the Pacific is to work with the sea otters in their home in the Northern Pacific Gallery. As I build my relationship with the otters and learn more about their personalities, I am beginning to interact with them using some of the more important husbandry behaviors that allows the staff to check over the animals health. Husbandry behaviors are behaviors that are taught to an animal to allow their human caretakers to monitor their health without causing undo stress.
Monday, August 03, 2009
In an effort to “clean house”, we are wrapping up loose ends on the RSS front. Please make sure to be subscribed to our blogs using http://feeds.feedburner.com/AquariumOfThePacificBlog/ . Any other blog feed will cease to update at the end of the week.
As an alternate, you may also subscribe using our newest feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/AquariumWebFeed/ . This one will update you on the most recent blog posts, AquaCasts, videos, and Aquarium news.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
One of the wonderful benefits of aquariums and zoos is that they allow some rescued wildlife a second chance at life. I at one time spent over a decade rescuing and rehabilitating wild marine mammals, so I know first hand that without these institutions many critters might have a disability or personality traits that would keep them from making it in the wild.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Just the other day I was talking to Alicia, my whale watching partner, and we were discussing how I haven’t seen any Risso’s dolphins this summer. Risso’s dolphins are usually here all summer long, and it’s not uncommon to see them on a trip when we’re looking for blue whales. Well I guess the Risso’s dolphins heard me because that’s all I’ve seen the last couple of days. More than I’ve EVER seen, and even better, they were mingling with bottlenose dolphins!!!
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Earlier this summer the Aquarium added an awesome new feature to our largest display aquarium in the building. We added skylights to the Tropical Pacific Gallery!