Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Seal Pups!

They are SOOOOO cute! They come in different colors from black to silver gray sometimes with white bellies. They follow their mothers everywhere. They seem to swim from the beginning, sometimes riding their mother's backs. And there are 12 or 13 that were born in the last week! You can keep up with the births at Pup News from the La Jolla Friends of the Seals site.

While these will not be my best shots . . . lighting was not right and I carried lenses more for capturing sunset rather than seals, these pups are just too cute not to share!

In watching the moms and pups today, I noticed that once they were out in the water, it seemed hard for them to get back on the shore, perhaps it was the wave action at this tide level. One of the moms seemed to try to be on the ocean side to help get her little one back on the shore - I think she finally did, but they looked tired afterward. One that may have been born today with a difficult birth was busy nursing.

At one point it looked like mom had had enough and kept moving away from the pup, but the pup was fast and stayed close. Something may have startled her, because she took off for the water, and that little pup came behind her just as fast as it could.

After watching some of the moms and pups by the waterline, I found myself going and checking on them one last time before we left. I was worried about the ones struggling to get back on the beach. Pup mortality can be as high as 50% - and I'm rooting for as many as possible to live!

I've got at least three nights here - I'm hoping for seal photos and sunset beach photos. Tonight I got both!

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