Sea lion pupping season begins in La Jolla

baby sea lion stands before a small pool of water with mom hovering

It’s sea lion pupping season in La Jolla, so there are smaller versions of our Cove-concentrated pinnipeds now, with more coming soon.

Sea lion pupping season — May 15 to Sept. 15 — began just as harbor seal pupping season came to an end.

Unlike the seals’ home turf at The Children’s Pool, which is closed Dec. 15 through May 15 to humans, the sea lion rookery, or colony, is established at Point La Jolla, which is closed year-round.

Sea lions also haul out at The Cove, which remains open to the public with warning signs for people to give the pinnipeds at least 50 feet distance – these are wild animals, folks. No selfies, please.

The mini sea lion pups will stay close to their mothers and nurse for about a year, much longer than their seal counterparts, who only nurse six weeks before they become independent.

A sea lion summer also means noise – the adults have a particular call for their pups that the babies use to find their mothers among the huddles of sea lions on the rocks.

Look out (and listen) for our new La Jolla residents, and as always observe them safely. 

Viewing Guidelines

Courtesy of the San Diego Seal Society.

Happy sea lion watching!

Picture of Elisabeth Frausto

Elisabeth Frausto

Elisabeth Frausto has been reporting on and writing about La Jolla since 2019. With dozens of local and state journalism awards to her name, Elisabeth knows the industry as well as she knows her community. When she’s not covering all things 92037, you’ll find her with coffee in hand staring at the sea.
Picture of Elisabeth Frausto

Elisabeth Frausto

Elisabeth Frausto has been reporting on and writing about La Jolla since 2019. With dozens of local and state journalism awards to her name, Elisabeth knows the industry as well as she knows her community. When she’s not covering all things 92037, you’ll find her with coffee in hand staring at the sea.

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