Grassy Key’s Dolphin Research Center is home to one of the oldest cetaceans in human care as Tursi, the first calf ever born at the facility, celebrated her 50th birthday on Nov. 26. Named after the scientific name for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), but informally nicknamed “Whopper” for her impressive size, the center’s matriarch is the offspring of Little Bit and Mr. Gipper, two dolphins that starred in the original 1963 “Flipper” film. In honor of her birthday, the center hosted a live-streamed celebration, complete with presents, party hats, banners, balloons and time spent with her trainers and an adoring public. Happy birthday from the Weekly, Tursi!
Photo by DOLPHIN RESEARCH CENTER/Contributed