Wildlife on the Mendocino Coast

The Mendocino Coast is teeming with wildlife:

  • Birds (great blue herons, ravens, hummingbirds, spotted owls, ducks, cormorants, geese, pelicans, etc)
  • Bears: only rarely do bears stray down too close to the coast; they mostly stay up in the coastal mountain range. Watch out in blackberry season!
  • Foxes: these are seen along the coast regularly.
  • Harbor seals: these cluster around MacKerricher State Park, providing a great show around pupping season in April and May.
  • Mountain Lions: these follow the deer, but tend to stay away from people. The last mauling in the county was in 1993.
  • Sea lions: these are found all along the California coast.
  • Sharks: a variety of sharks are found in these waters, including Great Whites.
  • Snakes: while there are snakes in the area, there are no venomous snakes on the ocean side of the coastal range.
  • Varmints & Critters: we have our share of critters and varmints, including skunks, voles, gophers, mice, and chipmunks.
  • Whales: we have whales in abundance, as 20,000 California Gray Whales migrate by here and back again every year.

Harbor Seals

Laguna Point in MacKerricher State Park, Approx. 3 miles north of Fort Bragg. Turn left on Mill Creek Drive, also has a small pond great for fishing and bird watching. Park between Lake Cleone and the ocean, and then follow the boardwalk out to the point where the harbor seals raise their pups in April and May.


Mendocino Outdoors is the premier guide to outdoor activities on the Mendocino CoastMendocino Outdoors, the premier guidebook for outdoor fun and adventure on the Mendocino Coast, was recently updated as an ebook for the 5th Edition. You can buy a copy at Smashwords.com, the Apple iBooks Bookstore, Amazon’s Kindle Books, and Barnes & Noble's online store.

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