Our day began at 6:00 am – the wake up call to our DRT team. Morning people they are not, but they are troupers. By time we arrived to Bailey’s Cay, the eyes were open. The underwater visibility was not as good as yesterday but we still captured much behavior.
Ronnie, French and Bill were all over each other and Ritchie and Ken were swimming together too. Lots of rubbing and squawking and clicks and whistles all morning; the data will be fun (and take much time) to analyze from this morning. They seemed to be playing and roughhousing with each other. Sometimes I got a bit close, and others I swam hard just to keep them in view.
The afternoon was spent with Teri, Head Trainer, learning the details of training – operant conditioning, positive reinforcement, rewards and more. We had a lecture on the specifics and then everyone got to try their hand (literally) at hand signals with Fiona and Maury. Of course, their primary trainers, Cayene and Yvonne, respectively, were with each DRT as they practiced training the dolphins. The smiles were evident on both human and delphinid faces!
The evening ended with a fiesta on Anthony’s Key: a picnic dinner followed by hermit crab races, limbo dancing, fire-dancing demos and more fun. All in all, another great day here on Roatan.
Kathleen and the DRT team