Winter the Dolphin
More Facts About Winter
Species: Atlantic bottlenose dolphin
Origin: Mosquito Lagoon, FL
Date Rescued: December 10, 2005
Age: 12 (Birthday: Est. October 10, 2005)
Diet: Capelin, silversides and herring
FAQs About Winter the Dolphin
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Is Winter a boy or a girl?
She is a female dolphin, just like her best friend Hope.
Who is Winter’s companion?
Winter lives in an environment with Hope, our newest dolphin resident.
How old was she when she was found?
She was just two months old. Normally, baby dolphins, called calves, will stay with their mothers for one to three years, but Winter was all alone.
Who found Winter when she was tangled up in the crab trap line?
A fisherman found her, and cut the line and called a rescue team. She was close to the surface when she was tangled up – otherwise, she wouldn’t have been able to breathe.
Who rescued Winter?
Rescue teams from Harbor Branch Institute and Hubbs-Seaworld Research Institute worked with Clearwater Marine Aquarium to save Winter and bring her to CMA. They also rescued CMA’s newest dolphin resident, Hope.
How did Winter get her name?
She was found in the month of December, so was named after the chilly season in which she was rehabilitated.
When is her birthday?
While no one knows her true date of birth, the team at CMA estimated her birthday to be October 10, 2005, as she was only two months old when she was rescued. When filming the movie in 2010, she was only five, making her the youngest movie star on set!
What is her favorite food?
That one is a tie – she likes capelin and silversides, two different types of fish she is fed at CMA. She was still drinking milk when she arrived at CMA, so has never had to hunt for fish.
What is her favorite toy?
She loves floating around on her mat.
How does Winter feel about all the attention she receives?
Winter enjoys the attention she gets from all the guests that come to visit her, as heard through her characteristic “tweety-bird” whistle! However, at times she will choose to rest in various locations of the pool, including underwater, or in a portion of the habitat where she is less visible. It is our goal to afford Winter, and all of our animals, an opportunity to make these choices as they see fit!
What was it like filming Dolphin Tale?
The limelight suited her well. The big cameras and lights were a change for her, but her trainers worked for a long time before the movie crew arrived to get her used to all that new equipment. Once filming began, Winter had a great time.
Where can I learn more about Winter?
You can visit Winter every day at Clearwater Marine Aquarium for a great opportunity to learn more about her and her story. Following Winter on Facebook or signing up for our newsletter are other great ways to get the latest updates on her progress. You can also watch her online via her live webcam.
Dolphin Tale was produced by Warner Brothers and Alcon Entertainment and released nationwide in theaters around the world on September 23, 2011. Winter played herself in Dolphin Tale, together with Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, Harry Connick, Jr., Kris Kristofferson, Cozi Zuehlsdorff and Nathan Gamble. CMA was closed to the public for three months while filming was underway; however, CMA remained a 24-hour working animal hospital during this time.
Read more about the Dolphin Tale movies.