In 1990 approximately two dozen elephant seals showed up at the beach at Piedras Blancas; in 2014 that number was over 20,000 and nearly 5000 pups were born. Large males measure 14-16 feet long and weigh 3,000-5,000 pounds. Adult females measure 9-12 feet long and weight 900-1,800 pounds. Pups are 3-4 feet long and weigh 60-80 pounds when born. Big males arrive to stake out territory in late-November, females arrive in mid-December, and most pups are born between mid-December and early February. By March the adult seals will return to the ocean, leaving the pups to teach themselves to swim. From April through August molting seals can be seen on the shore, while in September and October only a handful of resting seals visit the beach. A viewpoint along the highway provides parking, an overlook, and information about the seals. Docents may be on hand to provide additional information.
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Piedras Blancas State Marine Reserve
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