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Aquatic Park Lagoon Opens for Swimming
San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park’s Aquatic Park Lagoon re-opened for swimming today. The area was closed to swimming on November 15, after multiple swimmers received bites from a seal or sea lion.
The park has monitored the area from shore and by boat daily since the closure. No additional aggressive marine mammal behavior has been observed, and the swim clubs in Aquatic Park have not reported any new incidents.
Although the lagoon is re-opened to swimmers, park recreational users should be aware that these marine mammals are wild animals, in their natural habitat, and that their behavior can be unpredictable. Swimmers are advised to keep a safe distance from any sea lion or harbor seal they may observe in the lagoon, and to avoid any interaction with the animal.
According to National Park Service Senior Science Advisor Sarah G. Allen, Ph.D., Aquatic Park Lagoon swimmers might encounter more sea lions than usual this year. Allen, stationed at Point Reyes National Seashore, advises that if sea lion food supplies are low along the southern California coast, more animals might be migrating northward and visiting San Francisco Bay.
In addition to aquatic recreational activities, San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park offers a fleet of National Historic Landmark ships, a visitor center, and a library. For more information about the park, or its public programs, please call 415-447-5000 or visit the park’s website at http://www.nps.gov/safr.