Monkey Mia

Meet Niki – Not Your Average Dolphin

Full of spunk and personality, Niki is definitely not your average dolphin. Niki was given her name when an encounter with a shark left a ‘nick’ missing from her fin. After meeting Niki, one might speculate how the shark looked like after this encounter. Niki, a mother, a character and completely adorable can be seen in the front of the food line on the shores of Monkey Mia.

Meet Niki Not Your Average Dolphin

Monkey Mia in Australia gives visitors a unique opportunity to interact with wild dolphins when they visit the shore. While other tourist attractions offer ‘swimming with the dolphin’ and other adventures with dolphins that are often held within captive tanks in the ocean, Monkey Mia works towards a more natural dolphin experience. The dolphins are wild and they choose to come to shore for feedings and interact with people on their own accord.

Monkey Mia

flickr image by Eulinky

Situated on a beach that dreams are made of Monkey Mia, located in Shark Bay, Western Australia., is listed as a World Heritage Site. Monkey Mia offers an educational and interactive experience for visitors of all ages. Years ago, feeding the dolphins became tradition at Monkey Mia when fisherman began giving their scraps to the dolphins during fishing expeditions.

As the dolphins crew accustomed to getting fed by visitors they also became the tourist attraction in the area. Soon, the dolphins were getting fed junk food and before too long were becoming dependant on these feedings for survival. The dolphins stopped hunting for themselves, became aggressive towards humans and stopped teaching their young necessary survival skills. With the local dolphin population at risk, the park stepped in to protect these beloved dolphins.

Monkey Mia

flicrk image by R4vi

Today, the park controls the feedings of the dolphins to small calculated percentage of their daily diet. Since these structured feedings began, the dolphins at Monkey Mia have started to thrive. The dolphins can choose to get fed up to 3 times in a day by coming into the shore. All of the feedings take place before noon, the specific feeding times are dependant on the dolphins schedule. Only the females and their babies get fed, because the males have a tendency to become more aggressive.  There are the regular visitors like Niki who bring in their calves on a daily basis and other dolphins who make their visits more sporadic. You never know exactly who you’ll see at the shore.

Meet Niki – Not Your Average Dolphin

During feeding times visitors are invited to wade in the water while the dolphins swim around the shore. Park interpreters know each dolphin by name and choose volunteer tourists to feed the dolphins at feeding time. It is free to participate in the dolphin feedings and fun to learn and get up close and personal with these amazing creatures.

Monkey Mia Resort offers a variety of accommodation that will suite all tourists budgets and needs that range from camping up to high end. There is an interpretive centre where you can learn more about the dolphins and the work that the park is doing at Monkey Mia. There are great restaurants to eat at as well as several other non-dolphin related activities to help you enjoy your stay such as hiking, boating, various tours, and that’s just scratching the surfice. If Monkey Mia ends up on your travel itinerary, make sure to stop by and say hello to Niki.

Date posted: 11th December, 2014

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