elephant seal (Mirounga augustirostris) pupping and
breeding season on San Miguel Island throughout February.
Pacific harbor seal (Phoca vitulina)
pupping season on San Miguel Island continues through May.
Brown Pelicans (Pelecanus occidentalis californicus)
begin nesting on Anacapa and Santa Barbara Islands through
Baitfish, including mullet and cigar minnows,
move into the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary from
northern waters, attracting sailfish, wahoo and king mackerel
to the reef tract.
Northern elephant seals in the Monterey Bay
National Marine Sanctuary continue to give birth to pups and
many females wean their month-old pups abruptly by returning
to sea for an extended foraging trip. Before leaving shore
females become receptive and are mated by one or more bulls.
Copulatory activity peaks on February 14, St. Valentine's
The winter months are excellent for tidepooling
in California because afternoon low tides expose marine algae
and invertebrates (November-February).
During this month gray whales (Eschrichtius
robustus) can be seen traveling both southbound and northbound
through the Channel Islands, Monterey Bay, Gulf of the Farallones
and Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuaries. The whales follow
an annual migration from Alaskan feeding grounds to the warm
calving grounds in Baja California, Mexico before returning
Northern elephant seal (Mirounga augustirostris)
pupping and breeding season on San Miguel Island (January
harbor seal (Phoco vitulina) pupping season on San
Miguel Island (January and February).
Peak elephant seal pupping and mating season,
Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary.
Clam digging season commences, coinciding
with harbor seal pupping, Gulf of the Farallones National
Elephant seal pupping and haul outs at Ano
Nuevo and Point Piedras Blancas beaches in Monterey Bay National
Hammerhead sharks and spotted eagle rays
continue to school at the Flower Garden Banks Marine Sanctuary.
In late February, North Atlantic right whales
may use the nutrient rich waters of Gray's Reef during their
winter calving period before beginning their northward migration
of over 2000 miles to Stellwagen Banks and the Bay of Fundy.