Barking, bleating, and bared teeth increase this month along the Pacific Coast Highway in San Simeon as mature male elephant seals at Piedras Blancas beach emerge from the ocean to spar for rights to the water and female counterparts in their annual pre-breeding ritual.
"By no means are we out of the wilderness," Governor Jerry Brown said Thursday as he unveiled his budget proposal for California's next fiscal year. But for the state's financially beleaguered park system, his blueprint may offer some needed relief.
"This is a good reminder for visitors to stick to the trail and avoid the vegetated areas where ticks like to hang out," said Evan Jones, the chief ranger for the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.
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