The Marine Mammal Team teaches me how to prep and feed the animals
For the first adventure Gus Fosarolli, my good friend and part time photographer for these adventures, and I got up early and headed to the Vancouver Aquarium. We were met by the amazing staff who work at the Aquarium. If I learned anything it is that this is a calling for these folks. I changed into rubber boots and was brought into the “kitchen” to begin my adventure. Each day’s supply of frozen seafood is brought in, thawed, cleaned, sorted and portioned out for each of the animals. A process that is quite labour-intensive and takes a few hours just for breakfast preparation.
I need to say that at this point I just about lost it. I actually do not like eating seafood so at here I am over 1 hour into cleaning and sorting fish and now my most hated of all CLAMS. I was only able to prepare one of them for the Sea Otters as the smell was quite strong. Apparently the Otters (cost of $20,000 per year to feed) can be picky eaters and the clams are the most labour-intensive as you have to clean out the guts etc… Yup I just about lost it Here’s the team that took me under their wing and showed me the ropes. I was told I didn’t do too bad for a rookie.
Now that I’ve done my time in the kitchen I can finally get to meet the Belugas. Kavna, a female, is the oldest beluga at the Aquarium. She is estimated to be at least 43 years old. Aurora, a female, was born in around 1987 and is the mother of Qila. Qila (KEE-la)was born at the Aquarium on July 23, 1995 – the first beluga born in a Canadian aquarium. Here’s a photo journey of me feeding and touching them.
An awesome experience I would recommend for anyone. They are so beautiful and amazing to touch, soft and very jello-like. It appears that they are doing tricks for me but I was assured that what they were doing was only enough so that when they needed to be checked out by the Vets the stress was minimal.
Besides the whales there are so many things to explore and learn at the Aquarium including the new Penguin Point exhibit. Check out my Facebook page for more photos from my time at the rest of the Aquarium exploring some of the magical exhibits.
The Aquarium has a really fun and exciting new adventures for you to experience. The New Penguin Point Exhibit, World Ocean Day which includes Yoga class with the Belugas plus an After Hours Event just for Adults on June 27th.
The folks at the Vancouver Aquarium want you to come and check them out so they have offered up a pair of tickets to my readers for the After Hours Event! Here’s how you enter. You have until noon on June 15th to enter.
- Leave a comment in this post about your favourite animals and or experience at the Vancouver Aquarium (1 entry)
- Tweet the following:
RT to enter to win a pair of tickets to @Vancouveraqua’s #AfterHours event //ow.ly/bjMho on June 27 via @amuse_events
For more info on the Vancouver Aquarium please check out their website here .
Don’t forget to keep your adventure ideas coming and be prepared to join me in some of them! I should acknowledge that all photos in this post were taken by my friend Gus Fosarolli.