San Diego City Council Votes to Protect La Jolla Harbor Seals During Pupping Season
Sea Shepherd Applauds La Jolla Friends of the Seals for their Successful Campaign
Good news for seals in La Jolla came yesterday as the San Diego City Council voted 6-3 to ban people from Casa Beach, also referred to as the Children's Pool beach, during harbor seal pupping season. This has been a contentious issue in this upscale beach community for years, as many have fought for public beach access to continue throughout the year.
This beach land is critical to the harbor seals who give birth to and nurse their pups there. While a rope was put in place in an attempt to keep humans from getting to the seals, it has been ineffective. Beachgoers have been documented harassing and harming seals, and chasing them back into the water. Last year, the beach’s “Seal Cam”, set up to monitor the animals, caught two women kicking pregnant seals.
The need to protect our marine mammals from acts of violence and to give them space to live, may have been part of the reason that this protection is necessary and was enacted. Too many times, it takes evidence of horrific suffering endured by animals at the hands of humans before any action is taken. Sea Shepherd has seen this firsthand in Taiji, Japan, Namibia, Africa, Faroe Islands, Eastern Canada and many other places around the world. As Sea Shepherd Founder, Captain Paul Watson has wisely stated, the camera is the most powerful “weapon” in the world, and Sea Shepherd continues to use it in defense of ocean wildlife.
Yesterday’s city council meeting is life-saving news for these seals, but at the same time too rare of a victory in the efforts to protect wildlife from human interference and harm. The regulation will now go before the California Coastal Commission in August and is expected to be approved.
Sea Shepherd congratulates the dedicated activists who have worked hard to garner protection for these seals. La Jolla Friends of the Seals have been instrumental in ensuring that these seals are able to give birth and nurse their pups in peace. Sea Shepherd has followed the issue closely and lent our support when needed, however this enormous win belongs to La Jolla Friends of the Seals. Sea Shepherd applauds them and all who work to defend ocean wildlife and their habitats.
We also wish to commend the San Diego City Council for stepping up and doing the right thing to protect and nurture these beautiful, gentle animals and this unique wildlife nursery. Please send your letters of appreciation to the council members here:
San Diego City Council
202 C ST # 10
San Diego, CA 92101