Juvenile northern elephant seal Big Sur California. This little guy seemed happy to see me and vocalized and spun around, watched me and entertained the heck out me. Of course I fell head over heels for these guys.
Male northern elephant seal in full battle call. Their trumpeting battle calls can be heard from far away.
Heavy hunting reduced northern elephant seal populations to a worldwide low of less than fifty. Protection implemented by the US and Mexico have restored current populations to approximately 175,000. Although most northern elephant seals mate and give birth on offshore islands, 20,000 return annually to the Big Sur area on California’s coast.
In December mating season male’s battle violently for control of beaches and females, and gather harems.
Their battles definitely grab your attention and take place both on land and in the water.
Males weigh up to 5000 pounds and are up to 15 feet long.
The juveniles are adorable and curious little guys.
Mating agression is not the norm. Elephant seals are usually mellow creatures.
Please stay tuned for more photos of these remarkable colonies of fascinating animals that were nearly poached to extinction.
Cheers to you from the Caly’s magnificent ellies~
“with my favorite ally” up the central California coast. Lyrics: Anythony Kiedis
We are taking a short 4 day road trip to check out some of the few places where Northern elephant seals mate, fight and give birth in the US, on the central California coast about a 7 hour drive from The Holler.
On the way we stopped for the night in Ojai at a Hacienda Hotel built in the 1920’s.
It is a Wallace Neff paradise for people who enjoy Hacienda architecture.
The Christmas ligths make for an especially lovely scene.
We are now in Cambria California, on the southern edge of Big Sur.
Today we are searching elephant seals.
Gray whales are also migrating and sea otter live here.
Cheers to you during our elephant seal expedition in California’s Big Sur~