Half an hour with Jack and Daisy

I spent about half an hour watching the harbour porpoises Jack and Daisy as well as the beluga whales Aurora and Qila today.
Very relaxing indeed.

 

Lunch buddies

Today I had lunch with Aurora, Qila, Jack and Daisy.
Although I have spent so much time with all of these amazing beluga whales and harbour porpoises I never tire of seeing them over and over again.

Belugas and pumpkins

We were a bit early for After Hours and therefore watched the last beluga training of the day.

After their training the trainers put in some pumpkins, and both Qila and Aurora were swimming around them, underneath them, through between them while taking a closer look at those objects in their habitat.
Later on, when no one was looking, they even pushed them around. So funny!

Up Close with Qila

Due to our workload we could not go to Super Saturday at the Vancouver Aquarium yesterday, but today we found a couple of minutes in the afternoon to spend some time there.

Unfortunately, we missed half of Up Close with Dolphins, but were in time for Up Close with Belugas. Luckily for me, I was selected as a random visitor to participate in this show – and got splashed by Qila, one of the lovely belugas. This was such an amazing experience, especially as I could see Qila diving down to the bottom, coming up to the surface, looking at me all the time, and aiming her splash that would hit me – twice! It may sound weird, but I absolutely loved it!

After that up close encounter with Qila, Marcus and I enjoyed watching both belugas showing some of their fantastic behaviours.

In case you were worried, we also spent some time with Jack and Daisy – of course!

(to be continued…)

Vancouver Aquarium – here we come – again…

Being members at the Vancouver Aquarium is so worth it as we can spend as many times at the Vancouver Aquarium as we want during the year. Especially when we have an enormous amount of workload and hardly come out of the house, having some well-earned off-time at a place we love is simply wonderful.

So today we made our little round to first of all see the sea otters – and Katmai looked back at us!

Afterwards we watched Spotlight on Penguins where all African penguins stood well-lined up on one side of the habitat so that I could actually tell who was who. Steveston seemed to hang on interpretive specialist Vivan’s every word, always looking into her direction.
After that we could even watch marine mammal trainer Nicky feed those lovely penguins.

On we went to have a look at the beautiful belugas – and Aurora was looking at us several times. She even vocalized! That was so amazing.

We then followed the noise the Steller sea lions were making and found two of them sitting on their dock, being quite vocal, while one of the harbour seals swam by.

And finally we made our way to Jack and Daisy, our favourite harbour porpoises…

(to be continued…)

Hana and Helen, Aurora and Qila

It was Super Saturday today, and as members of the Vancouver Aquarium we made sure to be there very early. Believe it or not, we were indeed the very first ones to enter the building at 8:30 am. Luckily for us, the Aquarium stayed open an hour longer than usual during winter hours so that we could spend a whole nine and a half hours at this fascinating place.

As we were among the first visitors to have a look at Hana and Helen, they were curious and looked up to us.

An even more amazing experience awaited us while watching Aurora and Qila in their habitat. After a while Qila started blowing some bubbles and then swam right through them! How stunning is that!

(to be continued…)

Pacific white-sided dolphins, beluga whales and harbour porpoises

Together with my in-laws, Marcus and I arrived at the Vancouver Aquarium in time to watch the last dolphin show of the day – and the show was great! Helen and Hana seemed to be in a good mood and performed a lot of jumps.
After the show we stayed a little bit longer at the dolphin habitat to observe both Hana and Helen swimming leisurely in the smaller pool, having a good time.

After that we just made it to the beluga show to see the mother-daughter pair Aurora and Qila who also seemed to have fun interacting with their trainers.

Finally, we made our way to Jack and Daisy, our favourite harbour porpoises – and we were lucky as not only Jack came to the underwater viewing area to say hi but Daisy frequently came down, too! So we spend the remaining minutes with them and had lots of fun!

Fully energized, Marcus and I then attended our second special volunteer training which was really good and inspiring indeed!

After Hours at the Vancouver Aquarium

We were the very first people in line (were you surprised?) waiting to get into the Vancouver Aquarium for After Hours, an adult-only evening, that promised to be full of fun, entertainment and even education, especially when you consider its motto ‘The Secret Sex Lives of Animals’.

So what did we do in the four hours?
We saw a penguin walk featuring Nelson and Sechelt; and this time both penguins were running along the beluga habitat really fast. That was amazing to watch!

Besides that, we also watched both beluga shows in which Qila and Aurora had probably as much fun as their audience.

We also went to see Hana and Helen from above their habitat as well as from the underwater viewing area where both of them checked a stuffed animal out.

In contrast to the active dolphins, the Steller sea lion and all three harbour seals seemed to be really sleepy and hardly looking at their visitors, except for raising their heads a bit from time to time.

Of course, we spent most of the time with Jack and Daisy – we had promised them to be back, after all, and we had so much fun with them.
Jack was happy to be part of the evening’s theme as he happily showed everything he had – if you know what I mean; and he made lots of people watch at him more closely…

Anyway, the four hours were over much too soon – and we cannot wait to be back for the next After Hours event!

We saw sea otters, penguins, belugas and harbour porpoises

… at the Vancouver Aquarium.

Elfin popped his head out of the water and put it down on the ground while his body was still resting in the water. Funny, eh?

We then found a spot to watch the penguin walk, starring Sechelt and Nelson.
Well, Sechelt came out of her carrier first whereas Nelson still stayed inside his. The funny thing was that Sechelt got into Nelson’s carrier and stayed there all the time. Both took turns in looking out of the carrier before making themselves at home inside it.
Although there was no penguin walk this time, it was so funny to watch both penguins hiding inside the carrier.

We were at the right place already, at the beluga habitat; so we stayed at our spot and watched Aurora and Qila perform during their fantastic show.

Jack and Daisy were next, and we had so much fun with them – as usual.

Back home, I’m already missing them… Time to get back to the Aquarium soon!

Destination N°1 – the Vancouver Aquarium

At lunchtime we arrived at the Vancouver Aquarium and immediately saw a huge birthday cake (or better said, the rest of it) in Elfin’s habitat to celebrate Stanley Park’s 125th birthday. Elfin had already eaten the most delicious treats and was now having an after-lunch swim.

Meanwhile, Helen and Hana were playing with a ball, and shortly before their show started, Helen brought the ball to her trainer Paula.

We then watched Aurora and Qila swimming by at the underwater viewing windows before heading up the stairs for the penguin walk in which Hope and Salt Spring were the stars.

Back at Elfin’s habitat we saw Margo, one of the volunteers, and had a nice chat in which she also explained a lot about sea otters. And as to prove his existence, Elfin was crushing parts of his ice cake against a wall in order to get to the good stuff inside which he was munching away happily. He also gave us a glance from time to time.

Of course, we could not forget Jack, and so we went to see him next. He was really happy to see us, and we had a great time together.

Some time later we went to see Hana and Helen again who were in a really good mood, and then we went to the beluga habitat once more to watch another penguin walk. Luckily for us, Hope, our favourite penguin, was in it again. It is always so much fun watching her waddle along, while she is looking around and taking in her new surroundings. She seems to be really curious and never runs straight into her carrier.

After that we spend some more time with Jack (Daisy, unfortunately, stayed in her corner) who was enjoying the attention a lot. But then it was time to say goodbye as we wanted to attend another event.

On our way to the parking lot in Stanley Park we saw a raccoon family sitting on a garbage bin, probably looking for some leftovers.

(to be continued…)