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hawaiidolphin
12 July 2008 @ 09:36 am
Sorry no updates in a long time! My BF was in town, shortly thereafter followed by family friends, and then my immediate family!
I successfully passed my Phase I exam with no difficulty, and am now officially in "Phase 2". This means more work with the animals.
So far, we are able to feed sea lions and ask for hand targets, and with the dolphins we are able to ask hand targets, layouts, and b points. I get to interact with an animal about once every 2-3 days, which is REALLY good for a marine mammal internship, most allow little-no interaction for the first several months.
The people I work with are WONDERFUL, but our department has had troubles with communication recently, which can be frusturating, but this is by no means unusual for this or any other workplace.
Living in Hawaii is AMAZING, this place is really beautiful and has a lot to offer, but admittedly I'm coming down with some island fever, and am becoming very homesick. (I know when I get back, though, I'll be ACHING to come back out here.)
Everything is progressing well, and I'll offer more updates as I have them.
 
 
hawaiidolphin
31 May 2008 @ 08:44 am
Alright, about 10 days into my experience, and not an outrageous amount to report.
About 75% of my day is comprised of cleaning in various capacities, be it scrubbing scumlines, buckets, or coolers, and the remainder is predominantly comprised of watching interactive programs, and training sessions.
In terms of the "privelages" we've been granted (my supervisor's word, not mine, I think the whole program is a privlage!) are opening/closing gates when instructed to do so, and briefing groups coming to swim with the dolphins.
The biggest challenge so far is definitely the size of my group. In this department, there are 8 interns, with 6-8 here each day. Most of the day, there isn't enough for all of us to be doing something, which means spending a lot of time standing around. (Usually there's only 2-3 coolers or pouches to wash at a time, for example).
Hopefully this first part will go fast, since most of us know the terminology, etc, we are expected to know for our first exam.
 
 
hawaiidolphin
20 May 2008 @ 05:53 pm
Alright, orientation for the interns is officially over, and tomorrow, the real work begins!
We arrived on Monday morning, all 30+ of us (the largest group ever for the park, so we're told), and file into a fairly small room filled with collapsible folding chairs (very uncomfortable ones!)
The majority of the day was filled with lectures about the park, and policies thereof. Boring as it sounds. We took a single break to watch the dolphin cove show. The demonstration was wonderful, but the sun was and has been unmercifully hot and there is no shade in the stands.
We then had a small fish prep demonstration and walk through the kitchen and discussion of the food fish species. If you have ever worked in a fish kitchen before, it was very basic, simple straightforward stuff (read: boring) but was great for those who are not familiar.
The second and final day, today, entailed lectures predominantly focused on the animal species within the park. All the information was very simple and basic, which was good for people not working in the department where that species was featured. I wasn't particularly enthralled with the seabird lecture, and the reef people weren't too into the pinnipeds, understandably.
We saw the other shows and demonstrations within the park, including sea lion feedings, a sea lion show, a turtle feed, the "HOT" show (dolphins, sea lions, humboldt penguins), and then finished the day with a short multiple choice exam.
The orientation, though neccessary, was very boring, but it's over and tomorrow we can start. If I'm this tired from sitting in a chair or stands all day, tomorrow is going to be BRUTAL!
 
 
Current Mood: exhaustedexhausted
 
 
hawaiidolphin
13 May 2008 @ 09:27 pm
I just had to procrastinate studying for genetics, so here I am!
My adventure commences in 5 days, I depart Saturday in the wee hours of the morning.
Still haven't finished packing or figured out transportation, but that can wait until Ochem and Genetics are behind me in about 24 hours.
GET ME OUT OF THIS MUD PUDDLE! (Tacoma, WA)
 
 
hawaiidolphin
27 April 2008 @ 09:33 am
I hate the on season. Passionately. I dread the passing of the rains because it means the crazies come to the Zoo to display their poor parenting.
-Why yes, those are in fact sharks. Big black ones, in fact. Now, let me answer your question with this question: WHY ARE YOU DANGLING YOUR CHILD OVER THE RAILING? They are sharks. This is pretty evident. Nothing in that tank looks remotely friendly. WHYWHYWHY?
Same goes for the idiots that do this over the Belugas. Oh, the beluga would carry little Timmy to safety if he fell? *headwall*. Wild animals, crazy lady. WILD ANIMALS. I hope you get hypothermia.
- As I ramble about the pretty tropical fish, STFU! It's a small area with a lot of people I must project towards. If you have a question, that's fine, but do not interrupt me to ask me if the big endangered one is "good eatin'". I will get mad at you. Yeah, bad_service and all that, but it's rude and mean. I care for these amazing animals all day, comments like that are not acceptable. Next time, I swear I will ask if their child is "good eatin'".
- Yes, those are our volunteer divers in the tank with our sharks. They are rescue-diver certified and extensively trained. No, you may not go in. But you've been snorkelling in the Bahamas? Oh, well, that totally makes it okay. What are people honestly expecting me to say when they suggest crap like this?
-I'm sorry you don't like all the construction near the front, but Animal Avenue is nearing completion and you should come back on memorial day weekend to see it! What's that? You want to see the animals NOW? Uh, they're in our Hospital for quarantine. That's okay, you say? You're clean? I won't elaborate on this further, the vein in my forehead is telling me to quit while ahead. You can fill in the ensuing argument.
I love my job, but I'm so glad I'm working elsewhere for the summer (Hawaii here I come!). I just can't take the crazy in doses this great.

Oh, awesome audience man, you made my whole life this week. As I fed the tropical fish (exhibit to my back as I shpeeled), you burst out singing "That's Amore". I thought you were crazy, but I turned around and saw our leopard moray emerging for some tasty mackerel. I never hear seriously funny stuff at work, that was very clever and funny. I applaud you and award you a handful of tasty krill.