The training and feeding of our four seals is one of Polarias most popular attractions. Training is important to stimulate and develope the animals, and to enhance positive behavior. The animals are very playful and in our underwater tunnel you can study their graceful movements through the water.
The four seals living at Polaria are from two different species. The Bearded Seals Bella and Mai San belong to a purely Arctic species, and came to us from Svalbard in 2003. They have since been joined by the two Harbour Seals; Loffen and Lyra, who were born at Lofotakvariet in 2010.
At Polaria we train the seals during feeding. Trained animals are happier in captivity than untrained animals, and our main intention of training is to stimulate the animals both mentally and physically, as well as to train the seals in performing veterinary exercises that allow the trainer and veterinarian to make sure the animals are healthy and in good shape. This means everything from tooth brushing to blood tests. When we train our animals, we use a method called Positive Reinforcement Training. That means we reward the seals with fish and praise when they perform the behaviours correctly and ignore them for a few seconds when they make mistakes.