Two deepwater dolphins with hearing problems, including one that was rescued off Sanibel Island, have now been paired together and are calling the Clearwater Marine Aquarium “home.”
The pair — Rudolph (named as he was rescued from Sanibel around the holidays last year) and Rex — are already “best buds” as their species likes to be together. The two were paired together once the National Marine Fisheries Service did hearing tests and determined that they cannot echo-locate due to deafness and would likely not be able to survive in the wild.
Both are rough-toothed dolphins. While little is known about the worldwide population of rough-toothed dolphins, it is estimated that there about 6,900 in U.S. waters.
With the move-in, the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, which makes a great day trip as its about a 2 1/2 hour drive from Ocean’s Reach, is now one of just two facilities in North America that is caring for rough-toothed dolphins.
The aquarium is more popularly known as the home of Winter and Hope, stars of the Dolphin Tale and Dolphin Tale 2 inspirational movies!