2022 60¢ National Marine Sanctuaries – Sea Lions
Value: 60¢ 1-Ounce First-class Rate (Forever)
Issue Date: August 5, 2022
First Day City: Santa Cruz, CA
Type of Stamp: Commemorative
Printed by: Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd.
Printing Method: Offset
Format: Pane of 16
Quantity Printed: 38,000,000
Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary (MBNMS) is located off the coast of Central California and spans from Marin to Cambria. It covers 6,094 square miles of ocean plus 276 miles of shoreline. The deepest part of the ocean within the sanctuary is 12,743 feet (over two miles).
MBNMS protects rocky shores, sandy beaches, estuaries, and one of North America's largest underwater canyons. Its wide range of animal species has earned it the nickname "Serengeti of the Sea," complete with its own "lions" (California sea lions). It's the species that most often comes to mind when we think of California wildlife. There are also seals and sea otters. It can be tricky to tell them apart from a distance, but there are some tell-tale characteristics that make it easier. Sea lions are brown, bark loudly, and appear to "walk" on their large flippers. They also have external ear flaps. Seals, on the other hand, have small flippers, travel on their bellies when out of the water, and do not have external ear flaps. Sea otters have paws instead of flippers and are often seen floating on their backs.
There are plenty of other species to enjoy at MBNMS, including over 180 species of sea- and shorebirds, more than 525 species of fish, and much more. Whether you enjoy them by boat or on foot, you can't go wrong.