There is not yet any information what is waiting the dolphins sent in retirement.
Became known why the Ministry of Defence has placed an order for the purchase of five Black Sea bottlenose dolphins.
According to the source RIA “Novosti”, the new animals will arrive at the Sevastopol Oceanarium in return for aged. It emerged that combat dolphins if reached define age retire on “pension”. This raises the question of the renewal of the population due to the young individuals.
– Purchase of young bottlenose dolphins is connected with the need to update the population of animals. They like people grow old and even “retire,” – said the interlocutor of the Agency.
Researcher of the Southern scientific center of the Russian Academy of Sciences Gennady Matishov, the developer of training programs for marine mammals, told the “Izvesia” newspaper about military dolphins.
– In the Soviet Union training dolphins was carried out in the Cossack Bay near Sevastopol. The main purpose of bottlenose dolphins was to protect the water area of the main base of Black Sea fleet from underwater diversionists. The dolphins were “pasture” at entrance to bay. Having found a trespasser they reported about this to the operator at onshore point and having received order, were able to destroy it. For this purpose a special Dolphin muzzle with pike was made. Bottlenose dolphins have being trained to find torpedoes, mines and other sunken military equipment at depths of up to 120 m. They were adapted to helicopters delivery. The success of the programme was so high that the training of animals started in the Pacific and Northern fleets. However, the USSR breakup put an end to further programmes’ development, said Matishov.
Recent years funding for training mammals was conducted by the Academy of Sciences. The main objects of training were ringed seals, bearded seals, saddle-backed seals. Animals can detect mines, lift from deep waters various objects. Is sufficient to show to the seal the desired object and it will find this object. It has good active contact with the diver and can bring tools or attribute something to the surface. Moreover, the seal is able to distinguish friendly diver. Receiving the signal the seal can neutralize or kill underwater diversionists.
The only problem is that animals are always animals. Any moment the seal can start hunting or find a female animal and go “left.” No one can guarantee that pinnipeds commando will return after the mission at the base.
There are only two training centers martial dolphins. One of them is located in the United States, and the second in Russia, in Sevastopol.
How dolphins were trained in Sevastopol, told Valery Mitrokhin.
In the Soviet times Valery Mitrokhin managed to serve on the cruiser, to participate in warfare between Israel and Egypt and to work as instructor of the most secret anti-sabotage fighters of the Black Sea fleet.
Anti-sabotage service required to be fluent in scuba gear. I had to learn a new thing. Made training necessary immersions. I found top-secret details that together with people do service the dolphins. Midshipman Valery Mitrokhin became an instructor of dolphins.
The officer commanding, second in command, 4 midshipmen, 2 sailormen were in the group of special forces. We had diving boat. The combat dolphin could wear a weapon, although often special catches were practiced more often for the confinement of the enemy.
Bottlenose dolphins have already trained and could perform a large set of exercises. They were able to greet us with fins, to hike on tail and circle on the enclosure. They turned at once any object dropped into the water. I thing we could show good performance in a circus. But their purpose is another. They have to find and detain the diversionists. They got delicious sardines for that.
The dolphins took up duty for 4 hours. Only on an empty stomach. Well-fed animal doesn’t like to work. Our detachment entered into the third line of protection of the main base of the fleet. At the entrance to the Bay a trawler was constantly on duty. He had acoustic observation station to monitor underwater situation. In the second line were minibuoys along the coast sideway to Uchkuevka. The third line was protected by 102 detachment and combat dolphin
Combat dolphin could wear equipment. But the weapons almost hasn’t been practiced in the squad. The dolphin, detecting a diversionist sounds the alarm by pressing the rubber bulb. The trainer opens the gate and dolphin goes to the goal. The dolphin has fixed grip-spider on his nose. Dolphin poking by muzzle into diversionist. The capture is activated, localizing the enemy. The buoy bobs up. The divers on the boat bring on board dolphins’ catch. And the dolphin returns for the portion of scad.