The Dolphin Programs at Anthony's Key Resort
There are many dolphin activities offered at Anthony's Key Resort
in Roatan, Honduras. With a scuba diving or snorkeling package, you
will receive a beach encounter with the dolphins. After meeting at
the Roatan Institute for Marine Sciences (RIMS), one of the dolphin
trainers gives you a brief introduction about the dolphins, and then
you take the boat over to Bailey's Key, where they live. They break
you up into groups, and you can head to the beach with your dolphin
trainer. The trainer will have the dolphin come up right next to the
group, and you get to pet the dolphin, while they tell you more information
about them. The trainer goes through some hand signals with the dolphin
so you can see them doing flips in the air, pushing themselves out
of the water with their tail, and waving. Then you can give the dolphins
a hug, and let them kiss you on the cheek.
After the beach encounter, for an extra fee, you can join the dolphins
for a snorkel or swim. This is done in the same area, and you can
interact with the dolphins when they swim by. They love to play, and
will catch grass you throw to them in the water. They do best when
you let them approach you, since they are very curious.
Dolphins at AKR
I signed up for another dolphin experience, called Trainer For a
Day. This was by far the best of the dolphin experiences. I started
my day just before 8:00 by checking in at the RIMS desk. They took
me down to the "fish house" and introduced me to Edgar,
who would be my trainer for the day. He was already working on sorting
out the fish for the dolphins. He was separating the damaged fish
from the good, and weighing them in order to get the appropriate measurements
for each dolphin. After getting all of the fish cleaned, sorted and
weighed, we cleaned out the sinks and the floor and took the dolphin
coolers out to the boat and headed over to Bailey's Key.
I was able to stand next to Edgar while he was feeding Cedena and
got more interaction with the dolphins while he told me more information
about them. Since I was there during a beach encounter, they went
through the hand signals again, so I got to see the dolphins do more
tricks. We went back to RIMS and I watched an informative video about
the dolphins. After a break for lunch, we met in the fish house to
get the next meal ready for the dolphins. Instead of going down to
the beach area, I went with another trainer to do some hand signals.
The trainer showed me how to do some of the hand signals and said
that the dolphins love positive re-enforcement after they perform
a behavior properly. It doesn't always have to be with the fish, sometimes
it's good to keep the rewards different so they don't get bored and
expect the same thing every time, such as petting them or verbally
letting them know they did a good job.
Become a Dolphin Trainer for a Day
Doing the hand signals with the dolphins was very fun. After that,
Edgar took me out to one of the floating platforms. He brought two
of the male dolphins out, and we went through some more hand signals.
Then it was my turn to get in the water with them! He had them give
me a dorsal fin ride, which was great. I was screaming with joy, and
some kayakers and a snorkeler were watching us have a good time. Then
we tried to do the foot push ride, which was very difficult. The dolphins
know exactly what to do, but I had trouble keeping my body straight
and out of the water. I fell several times, but I don't think the
dolphins cared, they were having fun.
Sharing my time with the dolphins was an experience I'll never forget.
They are wonderful and seem to be very happy at Anthony's Key Resort;
they are also very well taken care of, and get plenty of playtime
and interaction with people. All of the staff at Anthonys Key
Resort were extremely friendly, and it really made our stay feel like
a once in a lifetime trip to paradise!
By Michelle Owens
© Travel-to-Honduras.com and Roatanet.com, all rights reserved,
used by permission only.