The Winter Zone is home to resident Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, Winter and Hope. This was the filming area for Dolphin Tale and Dolphin Tale 2. You can see Winter and Hope any time of the day when we are open. You can walk up to the stanchions by their pool for a viewing all day long! Go downstairs for an underwater view, where you might see Winter and Hope swimming by or coming up to the windows to say hello!
The stranding deck is currently home to our male resident Atlantic bottlenose dolphin, Nicholas. This area was built as a place to accept newly rescued animals for immediate care and quarantine from our resident animals. There are several state-of-the-art design elements that make these pools ideal places for caring for sick and injured dolphins and small whales. Nicholas is currently residing at the stranding deck as we work to expand the aquarium. This location also offers beautiful views of Clearwater Bay.
Rufus Beach is now in our new aviary and home to our resident great white pelicans. Ricky, who played the part of “Rufus” in Dolphin Tale, can be found here along with three other pelicans, Skylar, Matthew and Tyndall. Viewing windows for the aviary can be found across from the main pool upstairs in the Winter Zone.
Otter Oasis is home to our North American river otter Walle. Sand, water and toys create the perfect haven for this active otter.
Shark Pass gives you a whole different view of our current resident nurse sharks, Thelma and Louise. These bottom dwellers can grow to be 14 feet in length and can live up to 25 years or older. Look down into this large pool where these nurse sharks and other local marine fish eat and swim.
Stingray Beach is home to our cownose stingrays. This shallow pool gives you the opportunity to hand-feed our stingrays. During stingray presentations, you will learn the techniques to use if you should encounter a stingray in the wild. Stingray Beach also provides a replication of sea turtle nesting.
Turtle Cove is currently home to green sea turtle, Bailey. It consists of three pools that are deep and spacious, with plenty of room to submerge and swim freely. The cove is a great living space for resident turtles.
The home of our nurse sharks and wide variety of fish, Sea Cavern can help educate you on the many marine animals found in our local area as well as your impact on the environment. Touch tanks mean you can get up close and personal with local marine life, including sea urchins, sea stars and crabs. Get the opportunity to meet and even feed the puffer fish! Spot, a tessalata moray eel, can also be found inside the Sea Cavern. From this exciting cave, you can also look into the Shark Pass habitat to take a closer underwater look at Thelma and Louise, our resident nurse sharks.
Clearwater Marine Aquarium is a working animal hospital with veterinarian technicians on staff to care for all injured animals that come through our doors. At our Surgical Suite, you have the opportunity to witness the work of our medical professionals. Everything – from routine physicals of resident otters to emergency surgeries on injured sea turtles – takes place right here in our surgical suite.
While you are visiting Mavis’s Rescue Hideaway, don’t forget to view the Safe Harbor Surgical Suite, the former location for on-site animal care, now used as the Water Quality Lab and preserved as a movie set from Dolphin Tale.