Something is happening at the National Aquarium, and the dolphins know it. They are taking turns peering through a small opening in the gate that separates their tank from another one. In the next tank is a new dolphin!

“They’re really curious animals in general,” Aquarium spokeswoman Hillary Bates said. “They know when somebody new is in there.”

The new guy is Chinook, who arrived last week from the Minnesota Zoo. He has come to pair bond — or become buddies — with Bo, the Aquarium’s 3-year-old male dolphin, Bates said.

“It’s natural for dolphins to pair bond in their [wild] environment,” she said. “Dolphins are really social animals.” Chinook will join the nine Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins at the aquarium, but it is unknown when the public can see him in the dolphin show.

“It will depend on when he’s feeling comfortable and interacting normally,” she said. “He’ll bring behaviors [to the show] we haven’t necessarily done before. Hopefully he’ll be adapting well.”

“I like dolphins and sharks,” 3-year-old Conor McCoy said during a visit to the dolphin tank.

“I remember seeing a dolphin and he had to stand up,” aquarium visitor Hank Reinhardt, 7, said.

When Chinook has adapted to his surroundings, he’ll join the shows. For now, he’s still so new, even the staff hasn’t seen him.