Florida Aquarium in Tampa, where we were all treated to admission by our youngest! Woo Hoo! Kids with JOBS!!
|This otter was having a blast!|
|Natural looking habitat is provided for these birds|
|This sea turtle is missing a hind flipper from a shark attack|
|The turtle ignored the whole thing...|
|This big boy was standing his ground!|
Clearwater Marine Aquarium.
|As close as we got to a "show".|
Many of the animals remain here only as long as it takes to rehabilitate them. Some have been here for lengthy periods, and some will remain here forever, as they would be unable to survive should they be reintroduced to the wild.
|Her little nub|
|Winter's prosthetic tail|
|Different tail parts|
We were able to observe Winter as she interacted with another dolphin. Her friend seemed to be trying to get her to play. Winter seemed to be very subdued. She would watch the other dolphin from the top and then take a deep breath and dive.
|An older X-ray - her tail has a more pronounced curve now.|
Winter receives physical therapy several times per day in an attempt to reverse the curvature, while getting her used to wearing the prosthetic tails. They hope that her time in the prosthetic will increase and her stroke will return to a more normal one, causing her less pain and difficulty in the future. I took several video clips of Winter swimming and made a short video.
Kemp's Ridley turtles with injuries ranging from missing flippers to blindness.
Hawksbill Turtle. I can see why his shell would be of value for use as adornment... This fine creature survived a shark attack and will spend the remainder of his life here.
We very much enjoyed our visit to the Clearwater Rehab. We learned a lot and left with an increased awareness of the fragility of these creatures and how human carelessness can create havoc in their world.
|See the houseboat used in the first movie?|
After saying goodbye to the girls, Bruce and I took the trolley to the second facility where we were able to become more familiar with the movie.
Our ride back was via this water taxi. All of this was included in the price of admission. What a deal!? You get an entire day of fun and can feel good about where your money goes.
I have been thinking about the life Winter leads. I continue to mull it over in my mind and can't decide if it would have been better for them to have just left her to her fate, or if she would have chosen this life if given the choice. I guess we will never know.