How You Can Help
Send tax-deductible
donations to:

WildWatchcams
c/o WDFW
600 N Capitol Way
Olympia, WA 98501-1091

Olympia Systems Inc.

Seal photos and video footage were taken by Dyanna Lambourn, WDFW biologist

Cascadia Research Collective


Special thanks to Dept. of Social and Health Services
 
Photo of Great blue heron in the water with a frog in its beak.
Live SealCam
Live streaming video is unavailable
10 Second Refresh Live Image Update
Pre-Recorded Video
Harbor seal mother giving birth to a pup and their first swim
Harbor seal mother protecting her newborn pup from Bald Eagles
Harbor seal mom and pup interactions
Tips for viewing harbor seals
Other wildlife sightings at harbor seal rookery
Gertrude Island: Harbor Seals, a Raccoon and a Coyote
Sharing the Shore with Harbor Seal Pups in Washington State
Interview with Dyanna Lambourn, WDFW Biologist
Want to Learn More?
Western Washington SealCam Blog
General Natural History of the Harbor Seal
Seal Research and Studies
Sharing the Shore with Harbor Seal Pups in Washington State WDFW & NOAA
The Life of a Harbor Seal Pup: From Birth to Weaning Photographic Story
Life and Death on Seal Haul Out Photographic Series
Reports and Abstracts
Seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in Harbor Seals (Phoca vitulina) in Southern Puget Sound, Washington
Temporal trends in contaminants In Puget Sound harbor seal

SEALS

Life and Death on a Seal Haul-out

Seal photos and video footage were taken by Dyanna Lambourn, WDFW biologist

Click the photos to view a larger image.

What is a Seal Haul-out?


A sandy beach harbor seal haul-out with tide coming in.


Mothers with pups tend to haul-out at the fringes of larger
groups or will haul-out in special mother-pup groups.


A male harbor seal in the center of a local haul-out.


A female harbor seal and pup basking on small
grassy beach near a main seal haul-out.


Mother and Pup Interactions


A pup nursing from it's mother.

A blind female is seen here with her newborn pup. Biologists notice that she maintains greater contact with her pup. Blind seal mothers have successfully raised pups despite their loss of sight.

Older pup making contact with mother seal. Notice the lack of external ear flaps which is a identification character of the harbor seal.

Tense moment on the beach where mothering hormones drive a pregnant female (seal on the left) to attempt to steal a pup from another female. Biologists say this situation was resolved peacefully.

Sharing the Seal Haul-out


The killdeer is a common shore bird of the gravel and sandy beaches and this downy chick is mobile soon after hatching

Gulls, crows, eagles and other scavengers, along with opportunistic predators frequent haul-outs during the pupping season to feed on birthing remains, dead, injured or unattended newborn pups.

Common loons may frequent protected waters in fall or winter to feed.

A Bonaparte's Gull and Common Tern were captured on film at this haul-out area.

Coyotes prowl the seal-haul outs feeding on nearby berries and will prey on sickly seals or unattended pups.

Raccoons are a common resident near haul-out areas with extensive beaches and nearby woodlands.

Near sandy haul-outs beaches may be covered by sand dollars a small flat relative of the sea urchin.

Female with radio tag that is attached with bio-adhesive and allows for movements to be tracked.

The great blue heron frequents haul-outs and beaches at low tide in search of exposed small crabs, fish and shellfish.

 



Related Links
People for Puget Sound Alaska Dept of Fish & Game - Harbor Seal Info
Bibliography and links Seal Conservation Society
Northwest Marine Mammal Stranding Network- Washington Cascadia
Marine Mammal Protection Act National Marine Mammal Laboratory
NMFS marine mammal viewing guidelines San Fransico Harbor Seals and Links
Be Whale Wise: Whale Watching Guidelines (PDF) Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife
See More Wildlife: Elephant Seal and Steller Sea Lion Cam National Marine Fisheries Service
Marine Mammal Center Whale museum
Boater Education Guidelines: Best Practices for Viewing Marine Wildlife (PDF)