A bottlenose dolphin calf was born at SeaWorld California at 3.32 pm on Saturday 18 October. The calf is the second born to a 13-year-old bottlenose dolphin called Sadie after a 12 month gestation period.
Trainers and veterinarians at SeaWorld report that the mother and baby appear to be in good health and are swimming together and bonding. Sadie’s first calf, Kailani Koa, was born in 2009. This birth marks the 80th successful dolphin birth at SeaWorld California in San Diego. As with any birth, the first few days are critical. SeaWorld trainers and veterinarians will monitor the mother and baby round the clock, documenting respirations and nursing frequency. The calf is estimated to weigh approximately 18.14 kilograms. The gender will be determined in the coming weeks.
SeaWorld is world-renowned for its breeding programme, with successful births of several species of dolphins, in addition to killer whales, beluga whales, sea lions, walruses and other marine animals. SeaWorld is a world leader in research and application of artificial insemination. In 2001, the world’s first marine mammal conceived as a result of artificial insemination was welcomed into SeaWorld’s family. In 2005, SeaWorld took that expertise a step further, with the birth of the world’s first sex-selected zoological species, an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin. In 2013, the first four penguins in the world conceived through artificial insemination hatched at the Penguin Encounter.