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Download the Annual Report in PDF format - Alliance of Marine


									Annual Report   2011
     3   2011: A Year of Inspiring, Teaching, and Giving

     4   Alliance Marine Parks Educate and Motivate

     6   Giving Stranded Marine Mammals the Gift of Life

     7   The Global World of Marine Mammals

     8   Dolphin Tale Movie and Real-Life Miracles

     9   Why Research Is So Very Important

    10   Making a Dream Come True

    10   Our Work Is an Act of Love

    11   Members of the Alliance

2                        2011
                                                                                        Marineland Dolphin Adventure S.E.A. Camp

2011: A Year of Inspiring, Teaching, and Giving
There is no better place to learn about our oceans—and the very    The opportunity to experience a living animal nose-to-nose or
special whales, dolphins, seals, sea otters, manatees, and other   hand-to-flipper is exciting, leaves a powerful lasting impression,
intriguing marine mammals that live there—than at marine parks,    and inspires conservation action. In 2011, the Alliance of Marine
aquariums, and zoos.                                               Mammal Parks and Aquariums’ 48 accredited zoological parks and
                                                                   aquariums continued their heartfelt commitment to education,
Just ask! Opinion surveys confirm that the public understands      animal care, conservation, scientific study, and the rescue and
that parks and aquariums educate children about marine             release of sick and injured sea life.
mammals they may never get a chance to see in the wild (97%),
and that children learn more about marine mammals visiting
these facilities than in school classrooms (89%) and learn in a
way that cannot be replicated by watching television programs or
films (87%). (Harris Interactive® 2005)

                                                            2011                                                                        3
“Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin,” Georgia Aquarium’s TV program                                Discovering ocean wonders in Zoomarine Portugal education program

     Alliance Marine Parks Educate and Motivate
     In 2011, nearly 45 million children and adults visited Alliance member parks and aquariums
     where they experienced learning through guided presentations, interactions, and graphics
     about marine mammals and their ocean habitats. More than two million children participated
     in specially-designed school programs, summer camps, and other onsite educational activities.

     Alliance members reached over a million individuals    issues and explain challenges in the wild to the    New Avenues for Education
     through offsite outreach programs developed            animals they exhibit.                               Alliance educators take advantage of technology
     for school children, teachers, and community                                                               to promote conservation and use social
     groups—like Vancouver Aquarium’s AquaVan,              Swim-with-dolphin and other in-water encounters     networking to reach children and adults interested
     which for 18 years has brought small wildlife to       at Alliance member parks have enlightened and       in learning about marine mammals. Dolphin
     schools with the goal of creating future stewards      delighted over four million individuals since       Encounters, located in the Bahamas, released in
     of our oceans. Tens of millions of people find facts   their inception. These interactive programs are     2011 an application, Dolphin Fun Facts, which can
     about the animals and conservation information         powerful and impactful multi-sensory learning       be downloaded to iPhones and iPads free from
     on Alliance member Web sites, urging the public        experiences that emphasize that each of us can be   iTunes. It is appropriate for any age and contains
     to recycle, eliminate littering, use products from     a better steward of the environment and make a      photos, videos, and information about dolphins’
     recycled and renewable resources, and conserve         positive difference.                                natural history, behaviors, and husbandry.
     energy and water. Facilities like Wisconsin’s
     Oceans of Fun target regional environmental

 4                                                                               2011
Oceans of Fun promotes recycling                                 Seeing sea stars in Vancouver Aquarium’s AquaVan outreach program

        Television is a great medium for biologists,        project’s International Biological Art Contest,     New Fact Sheet:
        veterinarians, and animal experts to reach          an initiative that encourages conservation by       Dolphins Live Longer in Human Care
        millions of viewers with conservation messages.     inviting illustrators, photographers, filmmakers,   In 2011, the Alliance Education Committee
        Atlanta’s Georgia Aquarium is doing just that,      and animators to express their views visually       finalized and distributed a fact sheet on
        partnering with a new television series, Ocean      on topics such as ecological connectivity and       bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), the
        Mysteries with Jeff Corwin, to explore animals      endangered species.                                 most commonly exhibited species in member
        in aquariums and in the wild—a program                                                                  facilities.   This documented, scientifically-
        viewed by an average 1.5 million households         Marineland Dolphin Adventure and Georgia            based information about the species assures
        on 220 ABC stations. The aquarium has also          Aquarium’s Conservation Field Station added         continuity and consistency within the marine
        teamed up with the Discovery Channel to             a new twist to its Seaside Eco Adventure            mammal community. In addition to details
        provide a live online “fisheye” view of its shark   Camp, aimed at engaging campers in wildlife         on dolphin habitats, diets, anatomy and
        exhibit and educate viewers about declining         conservation. The SEA campers participated          physiology, sensory systems, and behavior,
        shark populations around the world.                 in a simulated rescue of a stranded dolphin,        the 26–page fact sheet references scientific
                                                            followed by discussions about the threats to        studies showing that the average lifespan
        The three-year innovative education project, EU     marine mammals in the wild, the importance          of bottlenose dolphins in Alliance member
                                                                                                                facilities is almost twice as long as their
        ZOOS-XXI, which is sponsored by the European        of keeping our oceans healthy and safe for
                                                                                                                counterparts in the wild and that calves born in
        Commission, encourages public interest in           the animals, and the role beach cleanups and
                                                                                                                member zoological parks and aquariums have
        science.   Zoomarine Italy and Zoomarine            conservation research play in the well being of
                                                                                                                higher rates of survivability than those born in
        Portugal are program partners, promoting the        our wildlife.
                                                                                                                our oceans.

                                                                                  2011                                                                             5
                                                                                                              Taz, the stranded dolphin given a
                                                                                                              home by the Indianapolis Zoo .

    Giving Stranded Marine Mammals the Gift of Life
    Many Alliance members around the world are           Louisiana after being found injured and covered in      season. The aquarium developed a new, temporary
    leaders in government-coordinated stranding          oil. He joined Dolphin Research Center’s family of      exhibit, Rescue Stories, to tell the stories of the
    programs, personally funding the rescue,             dolphins in Florida.                                    many animals saved by the aquarium, including a
    rehabilitation of sick and injured marine mammals,                                                           California sea lion that survived risky surgery to
    and their release to the wild. Polling underscores   After a stranded pilot whale developed scoliosis,       remove a fishing hook from his stomach.
    that the public fervently supports these programs    or curvature of the spine, during its initial
    (94%) and the placement of animals in parks          rehabilitation at a Florida stranding center, it was    At the request of the Bahamian government,
    and aquariums when they are too young or too         moved to SeaWorld Orlando for continued care.           Atlantis rescued a manatee mother and calf that
    compromised to return to the sea (95%). These        Experts there are using a custom-fitted brace to        were swimming in Nassau Harbor. Experts feared
    stories are heartwarming.                            straighten the whale’s spine and restore use of         the endangered animals would get injured by
                                                         her tail. SeaWorld contacted an orthopedic spine        boats; both mom and calf had recent boat strike
    Nearly 350 stranded marine mammals—mostly            surgeon who consulted with the president of a           marks on their backs.
    dolphins—died on beaches and shorelines              prosthetics company to create the brace.
    in the Gulf of Mexico in 2011; a few young                                                                   In 2011, the Alliance established a new Veterinary
    animals barely survived. The Indianapolis Zoo is     The story of Morgan, a young killer whale found         Advisory Committee, formalizing veterinary expert
    providing a home and loving care to Taz, a baby      emaciated and near death in Dutch waters, had a         involvement in all the organization’s policies.
    orphaned dolphin who is the delight of the staff.    happy ending. The young whale was transported           One important contribution was advising the U.S.
    Florida’s Gulf World Marine Park welcomed a          to a new home at a marine park in the Canary            government on placement of stranded dolphin
    young dolphin that beat the odds after he was        Islands after being successfully nursed back to         calves it deems nonreleasable—positive social
    found stranded, bruised, and battered by other       health by Dolfinarium Harderwijk Holland.               situations that assure they thrive.
    animals. The dolphin, Roux Brees, was named
    for the New Orleans Saints quarterback by the        In 2011, the Vancouver Aquarium’s Marine
    Louisiana stranding facility that nursed him back    Mammal Rescue Centre broke its record for the
    to health. Louie was also nursed back to health in   highest number of harbor seals ever rescued in one

6                                                                             2011
The Global World of Marine Mammals
With its strong international membership and recognition that global issues affect all marine mammals,
the Alliance is active in a number of worldwide organizations whose policies and decisions affect marine
mammals. It established a Brussels office in 2007. In 2011, the Alliance continued its long-standing and
active participation in the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species, serving on CITES working
groups reviewing live animal transport and permitting rules. Last year, the Alliance also recommended
numerous changes to the Live Animal Regulations of the International Air Transport Association to ensure
use of best professional practices for the air transport of all marine mammals based on Alliance members’
extensive experience and its transport standards and guidelines. The Alliance is a partner of the Convention
on Migratory Species and actively monitors agreements governing the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas and the
Small Cetaceans Committee of the International Whaling Convention.

The Alliance’s international activities are enhanced through communication and cooperation with its
professional members, organizations that include the Canadian Association of Zoos and Aquariums, the
European Association for Aquatic Mammals, the International Association for Aquatic Animal Medicine, and
the International Marine Animal Trainers’ Association. The Alliance in 2011 formalized a relationship with the
World Association of Zoos and Aquariums, aimed at increasing collaboration that benefits marine mammals.

                                               2011                                                              7
    Dolphin Tale Movie and Real-Life Miracles
    The movie Dolphin Tale brought to theaters in September
    2011 the poignant story of Winter, a severely injured
    dolphin who was rescued off the Florida coast and received
    breakthrough medical care that allows her to swim with
    a prosthetic tail. Prompted by the movie’s opening, the
    news media reported on other inspiring stories of real-
    life medical miracles at Alliance parks and aquariums
    and their extraordinary compassion for stranded sick and
    injured marine mammals. And, Alliance veterinarians
    have pioneered the use of state-of-the-art human medical
    technologies to effectively treat marine mammals every
    day, often working collaboratively with physicians and
    medical specialists on creative solutions.

    Examples include Six Flags Discovery Kingdom’s adoption
    of a California sea lion that was shot in the face and left    Sgt. Nevis’ life was saved by emergency surgery at Six Flags
    for dead by a fisherman. After months of rehabilitation at     Discovery Kingdom, where he is thriving today, after he was shot
                                                                   and left for dead by local fishermen.
    the California park, a surgeon donated his time to perform
    extensive reconstructive surgery on the animal—the first
    of its kind. The amputation of a dorsal fin of a Dolphin
    Quest Hawaii dolphin was avoided after a University of Pittsburgh medical research professor adapted the latest techniques in human
    regenerative medicine to treat the animal.

    Veterinarians at Sea World San Diego partnered with a university medical center’s chief of nephrology to do the first successful dialysis on
    a dolphin. At Miami Seaquarium, the lives of three endangered Florida manatees were saved by a flutter valve developed by a physician
    during World War II to save soldiers dying of gunshot wounds. Veterinarians there used the technique to heal a large tear in a manatee’s
    lung caused by a boat strike. And Connecticut’s Mystic Aquarium collaborated with gastroenterologists to remove rocks from the stomach
    of a stranded harp seal.

8                                                                     2011
Why Research Is So Very Important
Scientists have long studied marine mammals in
zoological parks and aquariums to learn about
their cognition, reproduction, behavior, and
physiology—information important to managing
wild populations and to the care of animals in
Alliance facilities. Research in aquariums and
studies conducted with animals in the wild both
have understandable benefits and limitations—
each setting providing details often unavailable
from the other environment. Scientists use
baseline parameters from animals in parks
and aquariums when evaluating the health of
wild populations.

A study conducted by the Florida Keys’ Dolphin
Research Center demonstrated that one
dolphin can imitate another’s behavior without
using eyesight—research that caught the
public’s imagination and the media’s attention.
After learning of DRC’s study, some psychologists
believe the research may have implications for
children with autism who typically do not imitate
well. It may help experts better understand
autism and create therapies for children with
the disorder.

Not only do Alliance members support research
with their animals, they fund many conservation
projects that benefit animals in the wild. The
Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund awarded
$2 million to conservation projects around the
globe in 2011; the SeaWorld & Busch Gardens
Conservation Fund awarded more than $1
million to worldwide conservation research.

                                                                                   Dolphin Research Center fitted dolphins with eye cups to study whether
With the help of almost 50 volunteers, the
                                                                                   dolphins can imitate each other without using their eyesight
Virginia Aquarium undertook its 19th annual
dolphin count in 2011, research that establishes
baseline data important should the animals’
local habitat become threatened. Likewise,
                                                       In 2010, Alliance members nursed hundreds of              The U.S. Navy Marine Mammal Program and
Georgia Aquarium continues to study dolphins in
                                                       turtles and birds back to health after the Deepwater      the National Marine Mammal Foundation, both
Florida’s Indian River Lagoon and emphasizes that
                                                       Horizon oil spill. Last year, the Florida Keys’ Dolphin   located in San Diego, California, continue their
marine mammals are sentinel species that provide
                                                       Connection, Dolphin Quest, the Georgia Aquarium,          research on how marine mammals hear and are
important clues to our oceans’ health. Mystic
                                                       Nevada’s Mirage Dolphin Habitat and the Sarasota          affected by sound and how anthropogenic noise
Aquarium is a collaborator in this study, evaluating
                                                       Dolphin Research Program, a partnership led by            affects dolphins’ echolocation abilities. In 2011,
blood samples for immune function and exposure
                                                       the Chicago Zoological Society, continued to              these efforts indicated that whales and dolphins
to diseases. Researchers stress that the public
                                                       support research projects aimed at evaluating the         exhibit a range of responses to manmade noise,
needs to understand the importance of reducing
                                                       effects of the oil spill and dispersants on dolphins,     depending on its type and magnitude and the
pollutants in our waters and connect the fact that,
                                                       establishing baseline immunologic parameters              species affected. A few species appear to be
when you poison the ocean and its wildlife, you
                                                       important to understanding the effects of petroleum       particularly sensitive to virtually any noise in the
threaten public health.
                                                       contamination on the animals, and funding a               ocean. Others view many sounds as a minor
                                                       population health assessment and satellite tracking       annoyance or generally ignore noise altogether.
                                                       study of dolphins in the Gulf of Mexico.

                                                                              2011                                                                                      9
     Making Dreams Come True
                                                                  Alliance members provide special opportunities for children with life-threatening
                                                                  afflictions to interact with dolphins in swim and encounter programs through
                                                                  organizations such as the Make-A-Wish Foundation. They host disabled veterans
                                                                  and those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder through the Wounded
                                                                  Warrior Project. They welcome hospital rehabilitation programs and children and
                                                                  adults with Down syndrome, autism, and cerebral palsy.

                                                                  In 2011, amid multiple surgeries, chemotherapy treatments, and hospital visits, a
                                                                  10-year-old girl, who has struggled with a potentially fatal brain tumor most of her
                                                                  life and who is an aspiring dolphin trainer, had a private dolphin training session
                                                                  at Illinois’ Brookfield Zoo. Her mom described the experience as “one of her best
                                                                  days ever. Now we have a memory, a good memory to overshadow all the other
                                                                  things. It’s the best thing we’ve ever done.” She has also traveled to Disney World
                                                                  with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

                                                                  Patients from Rady Children’s Hospital interacted with dolphins at SeaWorld San
        Joyful moments for young cancer patients at               Diego under the watchful eye of a SeaWorld trainer, who survived her own battle
        SeaWorld San Diego                                        with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and understands how important it is to bring joy to
                                                                  young patients who underwent chemotherapy at the hospital.

     The Dolphin Connection hosted the 11-year-old heart transplant recipient who is the face of New York’s proposed Lauren’s Law, aimed at
     increasing organ donations. After years of anxiety and worry, the family said that the cheer the dolphins brought their child was a very special
     and meaningful experience after a difficult recovery.

     Our Work Is an Act of Love
     There is one constant found each year in Alliance member facilities—the
     love professionals have for the whales, dolphins, and other marine mammals
     for which they care daily and their commitment to inspiring the public to
     share that love for the animals and feel a sense of personal responsibility
     for environmental stewardship.

     This commitment is decades old. In 2011, the Brookfield Zoo celebrated
     its 50th year caring for dolphins. Disney’s The Seas with Nemo & Friends
     Pavilion marked its 25th anniversary and The Walt Disney Company
     received the Jane Goodall Global Leadership Award for Corporate Social
     Responsibility for its longstanding efforts to connect children and families
     with nature.

     We want our guests to know that they are essential partners in the
     important missions of zoological parks and aquariums discussed in this          Grupo Dolphin Discovery
     annual report. By choosing to visit an Alliance member facility, they make
     it possible to educate the public about the need to protect the animals in
     the wild, preserve their ocean environments, to fund and support research—much of which is only possible because of the animals for which we
     care—and to extend a helping hand to the thousands of marine mammals that strand on beaches worldwide every year.

10                                                                       2011
Members of the Alliance
Alaska SeaLife Center                     Miami Seaquarium
Atlantis, Paradise Island                 Minnesota Zoological Gardens
CZS Brookfield Zoo                        The Mirage Dolphin Habitat
Discovery Cove                            Moorea Dolphin Center
Disney’s Animal Programs at The Seas      Mystic Aquarium
Dolphin Connection                        Navy Marine Mammal Program
Dolphin Discovery Cozumel                 WCS New York Aquarium
Dolphin Discovery Grand Cayman            Ocean Park Hong Kong
Dolphin Discovery Isla Mujeres            Oceans of Fun
Dolphin Discovery Puerto Aventuras        Pittsburgh Zoo
Six Flags Mexico Dolphin Discovery        Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium
Dolphin Discovery Vallarta                SAIC BioSolutions Division
Dolphin Encounters                        Sea Life Park Hawaii
UNEXSO Dolphin Experience                 SeaWorld Orlando
Dolphin Explorer                          SeaWorld San Antonio
Dolphin Quest Bermuda                     SeaWorld San Diego
Dolphin Quest Hawaii                      John G. Shedd Aquarium
Dolphin Quest Oahu                        Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
Dolphin Research Center                   Tampereen Sarkanniemi Oy
Georgia Aquarium                          Texas State Aquarium
Gulf World Marine Park                    Theater of the Sea
Dolfinarium Harderwijk Holland            Vancouver Aquarium
Hubbs-SeaWorld Research Institute         Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center Foundation
Indianapolis Zoo                          Zoomarine Italy
Lisbon Zoo                                Zoomarine Portugal
Marineland Dolphin Adventure

                                       2011                                                      11
Getting a sea lion smootch at Oceans of Fun

       USA Headquarters                          Brussels Office
       Westminster, Colorado                       Lasne, Belgium
         +1.720.887.5921                          +32.2.633.1503              

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