Driven by innovation
A first of its kind dolphin sanctuary housed in an entirely natural environment, AMLS aims to set the international standard for all future sanctuaries. For this reason, we have consciously incorporated innovative practices at every stage of the design and development of the Sanctuary.
AMLS is employing controlled enrichment practices to prepare Vroulia bay for the dolphins. Through the introduction of select species of juvenile and adult fish and invertebrates; the experimental replantation of vulnerable seagrass meadows; and the installation of small artificial reefs designed to target specific species, the overall fish population of the bay and surrounding areas will increase. This will have the added benefit of aiding in the recovery of degraded local fisheries.
Copper is the netting material of choice for the Sanctuary. Unlike plastic netting, it allows for efficient water circulation; is easily maintained; long-lasting; fully recyclable; non-corrosive; and has natural antimicrobial properties to keep it free from unwanted microorganism growth.
AMLS will also be the first veterinary clinic in the world to use copper surfaces in a marine medical facility to aid in preventing the spread of disease.
Live fish feeding
Dolphins in captivity are fed dead or frozen fish. In order to acclimate formerly captive dolphins to a natural environment and develop their hunting instincts, AMLS will feed them live fish from Markellos fish farm on Leros Island. The farm primarily produces sea bass and sea bream and has well-equipped hatching station with the capacity to produce grey mullet and other species of fish found in a wild dolphin’s diet.
International Research Center
AMLS will make a significant contribution to international dolphin and coastal habitat research by providing a base for researchers, veterinarians, and scientists to study dolphin behaviour in a controlled natural environment. Through the use of veterinary records, underwater cameras, hydrophones and external viewing points, researchers working at AMLS will be able to passively collect data without anthropogenic influences or disturbances to the animals.
Renewable energy sources
As a conservation organization, we work hard to ensure that our activities are carried out as sustainably as possible.
Electricity is sourced primarily from a hybrid solar and wind energy system, with backup generators run on biodiesel from recycled cooking oil provided by local restaurants.
The Sanctuary’s water supply comes from rainwater collection, a solar desalination unit with a supplemental water tank connected to local supply lines to use only when necessary. Waste water will be recycled and reused.
Natural Enrichment Processes
Our goal is to employ only natural processes to maintain a healthy habitat for the marine life under our care.The bay will be selectively populated with native detritivore species to help manage organic waste from the large marine mammals.
A solar pump will supplement natural sea currents leading in and out of the bay, providing constant enrichment of the nutrients necessary to maintain a balanced and healthy ecosystem and prevent organic waste build up.