SAN DIEGO (KSWB) — San Diego is known for many things — the area’s incredible beaches, near-perfect weather, Comic-Con and Balboa Park, just to name a few. But “America’s Finest City” is also known for a large population of an adorable and incredibly protective creature: sea lions.
In a now-viral video posted to Tiktok, two ferocious sea lions can be seen taking on a large crowd of La Jolla Cove visitors who were getting a little too close for comfort to the animal locals.
Charlianne Yeyna, a Riverside County resident visiting San Diego for the weekend, said she decided to pick up her phone and start recording after noticing a woman attempting to take a picture of one of the sleeping sea lions. The sea lion woke up mid-picture and began to chase the woman in the direction of the large crowd on the beach, Yeyna said.
“It was really shocking. I’ve never seen anything like it before, so it was unique to have that experience,” Yeyna said during an appearance Monday night on “NewsNation Prime.” “Luckily, I caught it on camera.”
At least two dozen people can be seen running from the two sea lions as the animals quickly waddle across the sand.
“I’m glad that I got the news out on these sea lions and that you should stay far away from them,” Yeyna said.
Since being posted Saturday evening, the video has amassed more than 10 million views and 1.3 million likes on the social media app.
Yeyna said that despite their aggressive approach, the animals went back into the water and no one appeared to be hurt.
According to the Dolphin Research Center, beaches and coves in Southern California are increasingly populated by sea lions during the months of May through July as this is the prime breeding time for the aquatic animals.