I Like to Teach Zeke Any Behavior I Teach a Sea Lion

At work we are currently working on some basic behaviors with a pair of new male sea lions. Today we started working on a “back” behavior, basically having the sea lion back up in the water (and later on land). I like to teach Zeke any behaviors that is possible for him to do that a sea lion can do. Examples: jump, speak, target, high five, tongue, lay down, belly present, spin, etc. Why not teach him the back up behavior?!

Here it is, he got it after about 90 seconds of practice. Notice the first two times he tries to spin and back up, I don’t accept it so he tries jumping backwards while maintaining eye contact which is what I was looking for.

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~ by manicivy on September 6, 2015.

3 Responses to “I Like to Teach Zeke Any Behavior I Teach a Sea Lion”

  1. Good grief I’d be willing to bet vast amounts of money on it being more difficult to train sea lions than Zak! I haven’t a clue what you’re supposed to do in terms of techniques and whatnot but pick up on certain behaviour and movements my dogs tend to do already and just incorporate that into a trick by means of a simple word or noise. I cheat wherever possible but cheating works for me! 😀

    • You’re definitely right, much easier to train Zeke! It’s all about capturing something they offer at the perfect time or slightly molding something they do already. Lots of patience with sea lions…

  2. I’m booking a sea lion trainer experience for me and my daughter in the local zoo actually and can’t wait. Sea lions look like big fat dogs with daft legs and gorgeous eyes. Bet it’s brilliant being pool side and working with them closely. 😀

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