As of today, there are 23 pups at the rookery by Hopkins Marine Studies. Some are doing better than others but it does seem to be a little better than last years horrific season. Many of the births have been at night, so I have only witnessed two. One I got on camera (future blog). The one I watched today as off camera, only because it had started raining and I had put my camera away. This little guy int he first picture is actually a premie. We know this because his coat is so furry still. Read back a couple of posts for more about the lanugo.
Mom's and pups do lots of the kisses. They are actually them breathing one each other and smelling each others scent. This nose to nose kiss is one of the first things we expect to see happen once the pup is born. I have seen Mother's not do this and it was always a precursor to Mom headed back into the ocean and abandoning the pup. This usually happens because the Mom is underweight. She probably would not be able to make milk or sustain a pup for 28 days of nursing.
The nursing takes a great toll on the Mom as the pup should double it's weight in that 28 day (approximately gaining 20 pounds).