Thank you to all who joined us on a Seal Watching Cruise this 2021 season!

Seal Watching Cruises are over for this year but check back for more information on next season and when our cruises will start running again!

Here at Long Island Whale and Seal Watching we will take you on a cruise aboard The Captain Lou Fleet out of Freeport, New York, to see these beautiful animals in their natural habitat!

Visit our calendar page to find a Seal Watching Cruise date that works for you!

Harbor Seal on Buoy

Seals of Long Islands Coastal Waters

Did you know that Long Island has five different species of seals that can be seen in our coastal waters? Seals are a member of the pinniped family which also includes sea lions and walruses. They do not live here all year round however, they typically migrate here from the north when our weather begins to get colder during during the months of November through May which is when they can typically be spotted.

Harbor Seal (Phoca vitulina) on rock

Harbor Seal, Phoca vitulina

Observed: November-May
Adults: 4-6 ft. 250-300 lbs.
Juveniles: 2.5-3 ft. 25-50 lbs.
Pups: 2-2.5 ft. 15-25 lbs.

Silver, tan or black in color with speckling. Often found hauled out on rocks, jetties, docks, beaches or sand bars.

Harp Seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus) on ice

Harp Seal, Pagophilus groenlandicus

Observed: November-May
Adults: 5.6-6.3 ft. 300-350 lbs.
Juveniles: 3-3.5 ft. 25-50 lbs.

Adults are silver-gray with a black harp on back. Juveniles are silver or beige with black spots over body.

Hooded Seal (Cystophora cristata) laying on side

Hooded Seal, Cystophora cristata

Observed: November-May
Adults: 6.5-9 ft. 600-850 lbs.
Juveniles: 3-3.5 ft. 45-100 lbs.

Blue gray with dark blotches and light belly. Juveniles have blue-gray back with light bellies.

Gray Seal (Halichoerus grypus) on beach

Gray Seal, Halichoerus grypus

Observed: November-May
Adults: 6.6-7.5 ft. 400-740 lbs.
Juveniles: 2.5-3 ft. 25-50 lbs.

Horse like head. Black, tan, silver and white coloration. Males dark with light patches; females light with dark patches

Ringed seal (Pusa hispida) on ice

Ringed Seal, Pusa hispida

Observed: November-May
Adults: up to 5 ft. 240 lbs.

Small, plump body, and their pelage, which is light on their bellies and dark on their back, with scattered irregular rings throughout. Pups have a white, wooly lanugo coat that they shed around six to eight weeks of age for a pelage that is dark on top and light on the bottom. Only after their first molt do they begin to develop the characteristic irregular ringed pattern.

Information provided by the NY Marine Rescue Center.