The Friends of the Elephant Seal are interested in having your visit to the Piedras Blancas elephant seal rookery be as exciting, pleasant, and informative as possible. The guidelines below are given for your comfort and safety and for the safety of the seals:
- Park in the designated parking area. Do not park on the roadway.
- Even in mid-summer, a good wind breaker is usually desirable.
- Remain on the trails, under no circumstances go down on to the beach with the seals. Also, make no loud noises or threatening motion to attract their attention. This is their home on land and disturbing them can only discourage their use of a rookery which is one of the safest for their pups. For further information on viewing ettiquette, please view the Marine Wildlife Viewing Guidelines of the National Marine Sanctuaries.
- View the seals from the bluffs either to the north or south of the parking area.
Elephant seals are wild animals. They are unpredictable. They may look docile and sluggish, but they can move very quickly. The seals are protected by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and Federal law prohibits harassment. The dunes and other bluff areas outside the fences or ropes are fragile and home to plants and animals.
- Dogs and seals do not mix. Keep dogs on a leash and well away from the seals.
- Please do not feed the ground squirrels. It is not good for them to get most human food and they do occasionally bite. Even if you are respectful of them and their diet, feeding them teaches them to approach humans, some of whom may not be so respectful and may be injured.
Elephant seals are protected by federal law. It is illegal to harass any marine mammal. If you witness harassment, call 1-800-853-1964.