Sea Lion in Clifton Court Forebay!

Jim Chiropolos

I have bern birding the delta recently and have seen several male sea lions. Its interesting to see one with fisherman around as they get excited and start making guesses of what it is ranging from “shark” “whale!” To “otter”.

But today seeing one at Clifton Court Forebay was quite a surprise. To get into this body of water, the sea lion either has to pass through a pumping station (is this possible? - I have no idea how they work) or go over the levees which would be 75 feet or more on land! I wonder if this sea lion was eating birds as the channel it was in is normally full of around 1,000 lessor scalp - but today this channel (8 miles in from the parking area opposite the three storage containers) was almost devoid of birds and I may have seen it take a bird. Animals are fascinating how they explore areas - cool but a complete dead end for this sea lion.

No rare birds in the forebay today but it’s an interesting place - lots of wildlife (also saw otters and many coots and ducks) in an almost industrial manmade setting.


Jim Chiropolos, Orinda