This past February, I wrote about selling our baby veiled chameleons to a reptile store in Oceanside. A year before that, I wrote about a great Oceanside Thai restaurant and its awesome aquarium. And in 2009, I visited the Oceanside Pier.
For today's My Town Monday post, we're headed 39 miles up the coast, back to Oceanside, CA. To investigate....(cue scary music)...
This is a California sea lion. (Thank you google images.) Not to be confused with a harbor seal, the California sea lion, known in science-y circles as Zalophus californianus, has external ear flaps and, with their noted intelligence, often are the trained "seals" you see at zoos and aquariums.
The California sea lion is found along the Pacific Coast from Vancouver Island, Canada (Hello Homeland!) all the way down to Baja, Mexico. There are also California sea lions at the Galapagos Islands. And there used to be some in the Sea of Japan, but this group has been extinct since World War II.
More recently, though, California sea lions have invaded the Oceanside Harbor! Yes, bulls (adult males who can reach seven feet and weigh 850-1,000 pounds) and their harems (females can reach six feet and weigh 220 pounds) have taken over Oceanside Harbor and show no signs of leaving.
The natives are not amused! The sea lions leave behind smelly poop, are raucous barkers all night long and eat the live bait kept in underwater cages by fishing companies.
p.s. The Oceanside California sea lions are not to be confused with the harbor seals at the La Jolla Children's Pool.