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Yaquina Head Natural Area

Seals or Sea Lions?

Harbor Seal
Harbor Seal

Harbor seals haul out on the offshore rocks at the tip of the headland and on the rocks inside Quarry Cove. Adults can be seen year-round. The pupping season occurs at Yaquina Head during April and May.

Gray whales, killer whales, and sea lions occasionally can be seen from the headland.

To look for seals stand on the Cobble Beach observation deck and look out towards the low flat rocky island and study it carefully. Seals can also be seen in Quarry Cove. If seals are present in Quarry Cove, either in the water or hauled out on the rocks, entrance into the lower cove (beyond the signs) is prohibited.

Sea Lion Helpful Hints:

  • Sea lions bark.
  • Sea lions are all one color.

Seal Helpful Hints:

  • Seals move like an inch-worm.
  • Seals have spots or blotches.

How many are on the island? Do you see any in the water? Look for their round shiny heads.

The marine mammals you have been observing are harbor seals. A number of them live on these protected islands year-round. Look for seal pups in the spring.