Saturday, June 15, 2013

Empress has a Pinniped Visitor

When I returned to Empress from West Marine today, I found people from G Dock photographing a large sea lion that was snoozing on the dock near the bow of Empress.  In Quivira Basin the seals normally hang out at the North end of the bait barge and on dock fingers close to the bait barge, although big guys like our visitor often find difficulty finding a good spot, so I guess this one was exploring alternative napping locations.

Sea lion snoozing on dock near bow of Empress
As shown in the photo below, viewed close up, sea lions look like friendly dogs, although they can be aggressive and bite, if scared or provoked.

Our visitor's face close up

After preening for the photographers, our visitor dove in between the bow of Empress and the dock finger - the spot where we often tie up our Boston Whaler tender.  Needless to say, we hope he doesn't come back and jump into the tender.

Sea lion preening on the dock for photographers
When we tied up our previous trawler (a 45-foot Sea Ranger) in Monterey, there was a very large sea lion on the dock finger assigned to us.  When a member of the crew tried to step on the dock with a line, the sea lion growled at him, so we circled around and I called the harbor master on the radio.  To our amusement, the harbor master answered on the radio, "Don't tell anyone I told you this, but when no one is looking, poke him with a boat hook!"  Fortunately for us and the sea lion, it took off when we re-approached the dock.

No comments: