Yes, sea lions like to stay together in large groups; two species that live along the California coast are the California sea lion and the steller sea lion. The sea lions that mysteriously left San Francisco most likely left to follow a food source according to the executive director of the Marine Mammal Center in Sausalito. He further states that while more than the usual amount left the pier, the herd will most likely come back in the spring like usual. During the fall, older sea lions have been known to migrate to the Channel Islands off the coast of Santa Barbara while the younger ones travel to various locations. As of yet, no one know exactly where the 1,700 sea lions have migrated off to though.
Sea Lions travel in packs. And then usually join up with larger groups. Below is a video for you to see the immense groupings they are in.
(You should also check out the videos where the great whites go after the sea lions then they are in a group…its crazy!)
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