Seals on the beach are a regular sighting in the Bay Area but one elephant seal in particular caught the eyes of San Francisco residents on Thursday.
An elephant seal was spotted molting on the shore at Aquatic Park in the city, and while Marine experts say it's normal for the creature to shed its skin during these months, it's unusual for them to do it around the area.
It can take weeks for elephant seals to shed old skin and hair and they usually return to Año Nuevo to do so, according to the California Department of Parks and Recreation.
Young adult males like this little guy typically molt from May to June and adult seals molt from July to August.
A juvenile Elephant Seal has come ashore to molt and sun itself at #AquaticPark in #SanFrancisco and is drawing quite a bit of attention. @GoldenGateNPS reminds beachgoers not to approach or disturb the animals. pic.twitter.com/tfuRrgkim0— Christopher Jewett (@sfnewsman) April 18, 2019
A rare occurrence at #AquaticPark in #SanFrancisco- a 6-month-old elephant seal (male) is on the beach molting. Marine experts say this is a normal process for the species, just not in this location. Crowd building at the site. The seal can take *weeks to molt. @nbcbayarea pic.twitter.com/wBomZaDn9Z— Sam Brock (@SamNBCBayArea) April 18, 2019
Better picture of the adorable baby elephant seal molting at Aquatic Park �� pic.twitter.com/18bYgtY3Jy— Sam Brock (@SamNBCBayArea) April 18, 2019
Park officials have taped off the area and warned people to not approach or disturb the animal.