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Leave Seals Be

You can save a life by remembering to "Leave Seals Be" and call The Marine Mammal Center's 24-hour Rescue Hotline if you spot a marine mammal in distress.

Young pups, especially tiny harbor seal pups, have innate charm and are quite photogenic. But they aren’t keen on up-close selfies and don’t make good playmates with your dog or kids!

These young pups are at the most vulnerable stage of their life and can be easily separated or abandoned by their mothers if humans or dogs get too close.

To keep these pups safe, keep these three tips in mind when enjoying the beauty of California’s coastline:

  • The best thing for you to do is to keep your distance! Harbor seal mothers often leave their pups ashore while they're feeding at sea, leading many people to mistakenly believe they’ve been abandoned.
  • It’s ok to take photos and admire the animals, but if you’re not using the zoom on your camera or the seals are paying attention to you, you’re too close.
  • If you see any seal in distress, you should call The Marine Mammal Center's 24-Hour Rescue Hotline.

24-Hour Rescue Hotline Numbers

(415) 289-SEAL - For the Bay Area (including Point Reyes National Seashore, Bolinas, Richmond, Sausalito and Pescadero) as well as the Anchor Bay and Fort Bragg region (including Sonoma and Mendocino coastlines, Jenner, and the Sea Ranch and MacKerricher areas)

(805) 771-8300 - For the Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo region (including southern Big Sur, Moonstone Drive in Cambria and Shell Beach areas)

(831) 633-6298 - For the Monterey Bay region (including San Lorenzo River, Pebble Beach and northern Big Sur areas)

After your call is placed, the Center will monitor the pup for 24 hours or more depending on the situation, and if necessary, trained volunteers and staff will rescue it safely.

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