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Volume xviii, Issue 11 ~ March 18 - March 24, 2010

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This Week's Creature Feature

Dolphin mother and baby doing swimmingly

by Sandra Olivetti Martin

Wednesday, March 10 was the happy day.

Mother Jade the dolphin gave birth to her second calf at about 9pm. It was a big, strong baby, three feet long and about 30 pounds, sex as yet undetermined.

“The calf is very alert and strong, and appears to be healthy,” writes National Aquarium, Baltimore, senior dolphin trainer Kerry Martens in a blog. “It has been swimming alongside Jade and Shiloh, a 31-year-old experienced mother, taking synchronized breaths with Jade, and has started to nurse.”

Jade’s pregnancy kept the aquarium buzzing. She was watched 24/7 since late February by a cadre of 50 trained volunteers working in three-hour weekly shifts. So the camera was ready when the baby began to emerge, flukes first.

See the amazing birth and the calf’s speedy adaptation, and learn how to send a baby gift, at

The new baby joins nine-year-old Jade’s first born, Foster, two years old, in a colony of 11 dolphins of three generations ranging in age from one to 38. It’s the eighth of the colony born at the National Aquarium.

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