Thursday, January 7, 2010

Sea Lion Migration

For a month or more, I've been seeing stories about San Francisco Bay's missing sea lions. Then back around Christmas, I saw a very short blip saying they had apparently turned up in Oregon. I thought it was interesting, but there was very little supporting information. Specifically, I wanted to know where they were turning up; Oregon's coast is several hundred miles long, and is very diverse in its physical and biological aspects.

I had my suspicions, though...... and they have turned out to be accurate. According to KGW (a Portland TV station),
Officials with Sea Lion Caves, a private preserve near Florence, Ore., say huge pods of the animals — now numbering about 2,000 — began showing up in October, about the same time they started leaving Pier 39.

Kim Suryan, a biologist with the Marine Mammal Institute in Newport, Ore., says the numbers are much higher than usual.
The photo above is one I took a bit before Christmas a year ago, and first posted here, where I also discuss a little of the geology of this magnificent cave.

Followup: While I was putting this post together, OregonLive posted the story too, with another photo and a link to a San Francisco Chronicle article that is much more thorough, and has a few more pictures.

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