As Memorial Day weekend approaches, shore towns are preparing for an influx of people seeking out fun in the sun along South Jersey’s beaches.

But those towns are reminding people of the proper procedures if they encounter stranded or injured marine life, who have sought out the beach for different reasons.

Seals, dolphins, and sea turtles are just some of the ocean species that staff at the Marine Mammal Stranding Center in Brigantine tend to throughout the year. However, people are more likely to come into contact with these stranded creatures as the weather turns nicer.

Latest Video

Local police departments as well as Bob Schoelkopf, founding director of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center, advise those along the beach to never get too close to a stranded mammal. In the case of a stranded seal, Schoelkopf says some are tempted to try to help the mammal get back into the water, while others get too close while trying to take a picture with the seal.

In both cases, Shoelkopf explained that harm can come to both the seal and the person.

Captain Steven Ang of the Ocean City Police Department advises that anyone who comes into contact with sick or stranded marine life to call the police, who can create a safe zone that keeps both people and the animal as safe as possible.

Schoelkopf also recommends emailing a picture of the mammal to his center so the staff can properly assess what they are dealing with.

Seals may wash up along the South Jersey shore through August, while dolphins and sea turtles are more common later in the summer.

Read more Sunday in The Press of Atlantic City.

Never miss breaking news as it happens! Sign up now to receive alerts delivered to your inbox.

Contact: 609-272-7247

Twitter @ACPressSkeldon

Recommended for you

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.