As the water cools, sightings of harbor seals hauled out and basking in the sun on the marsh islands of East Bay and along Jones Beach are becoming more common. Less common are grey seals and harp seals. Hunting once decimated local populations. The Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 now protects them from any human interference or hunting.
Seal watching paddles are offered by Empire Kayaks. Capt. Lou Fleet has boat tours out of Freeport’s Nautical Mile. The best way to observe seals is from a distance of at least 50-feet, do not approach or disturb them.