People banned from Children’s Pool during seal pupping season

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SAN DIEGO - People won't be allowed at the Children's Pool beach in La Jolla starting Monday and for the next five months during seal pupping season.

Earlier this year, the City of San Diego ruled to ban people from the beach. The California Coastal Commission approved the ban in August.

Ken Hunrichs, the president of Friends of the Children's Pool, said there's a problem with the ban. His organization has been fighting for 10 years to allow people to have access the beach to enter the ocean.

"We believe the courts will find and recognize that there is a constitutional issue," said Hunrichs.

Hunch said the beach should be split in half – equal parts for the seals and people.

"We're not advocating people go up and interact closely with seals, but the seals are well accustomed to being around people," said Hunrichs.

People at the beach didn't seem to mind the ban.

"It's perfectly normal for people to be upset, but you have to think about the animal. This is their habitat. Five months goes by real quickly," said Maggie Nunez, who was visiting the area.

"You want more of them coming back. And in order for more seals to be here year-round, you need to let them have their time for themselves," said another beach go-er.


  • Jeff Baymiller

    Why don’t they set up a children’s pool somewhere else? Is there really a necessity for a children’s pool?

    • Kay Ryckman

      It’s so difficult to reply to Jeff B without being insulting. Maybe he could do a little reading about the Children’s Pool and acquaint himself with the unique nature of it. Maybe try to educate himself on the history of it and of one of this country’s most noted philanthropists (Ellen B Scripps). Who knows… maybe even learn something about the natural sites available to Harbor Seals, where there are no people to potentially annoy them. That might help him avoid making ignorant comments. Just sayin’…

    • Cheri Jacobs

      Go chop of your legs Jeff Baymiller and then decide a good place to go for a swim in the real Pacific Ocean. The ramp into the Childrens Pool served it for over half a century. People in wheelchairs can not negotiate wide sand beaches or stairs or cliffs or bluffs or surf. How incredibly selfish. One in five Americans are disabled. San Diego is a military town literally pumping out paralyzed people, who deserve the access all year around into the Children’s Pool that was especially built for them. Especially as Ellen Scripps states: ” Especially for those handicapped in life’s game”. She built the pool for humans who can not do surf. There is no other ramped access into the real Pacific Ocean. Go to my website at to educate yourself. Did you chop off your legs yet so you may really get it? No? Then wise up and know the facts. The seals have created dead zones all over the world now. They are more populated than the common park pigeon, but the Garibaldi are protected, the CA mussels are needed and dolphins are starving to death as the seals devour over fifty pounds of biomass each day. Do the math, thousands of seals X 50 pounds of fish each day. DEAD ZONES. Blocked Access to Disabled People including Veterans, Challenged Athletes, Wounded Warriors. What makes you think you can support the blocking of Access to these people who have lost life and limb for you. Are harbor seals who are over populated more important to you. REally? Then get out of America NOW Traitor!

  • Cheri Jacobs

    What everyone is failing to understand is the FACT that the Children’s Pool IS the ONLY non surf ocean therapy pool built not only for Children but for the disabled. The ramp is the only dedicated vertical easement ramp into the only ocean pool on the map. FACT. Wheelchair swimmers could actually roll in on their own accord for an ocean POOL swim. The Children’s Pool was not meant to be a beach at all, it is a ocean POOL with four grilled sluiceways designed to be reopened to keep the sand and pollution out and the water in the pool. Now it is closed and will fill up with pollution and stench. Now the new ADA shower going in will have no need, as the ramp into the pool that served it and it on the map has been destroyed. This is against human morality. The seals have eaten all the biomass, gone are all tide pool creatures, gone are the staple CA. Black Mussels, Garibaldi depleted, a total DEAD Zone. Dolphins are now starving to death as the seals eat all their fish stocks. A dead sea lion revealed it had eaten over a hundred fist size rocks, as they are starving. Just some good old fashioned birth control is in order no less than we use to bring populations in harmony. But no you humans are just too ignorant of the facts and of the delicate balance of the ocean. If you love a seal then you must love his home, now a dead zone and no end in site. Shame on humans. By the time you lay your head to sleep on this Christmas Eve about twenty two more disabled American Veterans will have committed suicide. Don’t you think that the joy and therapy of the only ocean pool in at least in order for them? A Paraplegic Navy Seal needs the protection of the Seal Wall and not a harbor seal. For Peats Sake, Wise up and stop being duped by The Seal Conservancy only interested in those large donations that line their pockets and the pockets of the San Diego government .

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