• San Diego, California, USA
Mammals
La Jolla Cove and the Children’s Pool

La Jolla Cove and the Children’s Pool

Stay 4 seals away from the closest seal and 2 sea lions away from the closest sea lion

If you see a sick or injured marine mammal, call the Seaworld Marine Mammal Rescue at (800) 541-SEAL. Make sure not to touch or come close to the wildlife as it can cause unnecessary stress.

La Jolla Cove

La Jolla Cove is open year-round. Its inhabitants are California sea lions with their pups. It is a great place to watch and photograph the sea lions. Sea lions are generally harder to scare, but people must take precaution to stay far away for the safety of both species. A minimum length of two adult sea lions should be between you and the closest sea lions at all times. If a sea lion looks up or moves near you, back away even more to make sure you are not disturbing them. If you spend enough time watching them, you can learn their body language and the warning signals they give when disturbed.

The Children’s Pool

Harbor seals have long inhabited the Children’s Pool and can often be seen on the sand, especially early in the morning, when few or no people are present. Unfortunately, due to uninformed or ignorant visitors, the Children’s Pool (Casa Beach) is closed from December 15 to May 15 to protect the newly-born seal pups. During the critical stages when the young are raised, it is crucial that there are no disturbances. There has been a constant debate between environmentalists and visitors about the seals. At the beach, it is clear that the humans mean no harm when photographing themselves and enjoying the beach. However, their actions are often damaging to the wildlife. Unable to read the seal’s body language, they try to get as close as possible until the seal flushes, or runs back to the water. Seals are protected by the Marine Mammal Act and flushing is illegal. Since the beach has been set to close each pupping season, no seals have been spooked by the visitors and no negative seal and human interactions have occurred. During the times the beach is open, a yellow rope is in place to protect the wildlife. Early in the morning seals can be seen collected on the shore without human disturbance. However, when many humans are on the beach later in the day, seals are few.

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