California sea lion population is booming in Morro Bay — ‘They are fat and happy’
Friends of the Morro Bay Harbor District is raising money to rebuild a floating dock in the middle of the bay that has been nearly loved to death by the local sea lions who call it home.
The dock is a popular viewing destination for kayakers and sightseeing tours to watch the animals lounging in the sun and barking at each other, but it has buckled under the crushing mass of dozens of sea lions, who can weigh more than 600 pounds each.
“The whole structure was not built to accommodate that much weight on top of it. So the braces that form the structure are broken; The deck boards are lifted and broken; The floats underneath it are not holding the weight,” said Harbor Patrol Supervisor Becka Kelly.
The dock used to be a highly sought-after moor for boats, but the “sea lions have won” and it was turned over to them about 10 years ago, Kelly said.
Now, the Harbor Department wants to rebuild it for the sea lions, with the animals’ weight and safety in mind.
Donors giving $1,000 or more can have a business or family name on a sign that will be displayed on a piling above the new dock.