A young leopard seal has been holidaying at Main Beach near Leisure Island.
The seal has been there since Sunday and has likely come ashore to moult.
A sign was erected in the sand near the seal warning people to keep their distance and DoC volunteers were at the beach to answer any questions.
In January, visitors were lining up at Tauranga Bridge Marina to take photos of a leopard seal that was relaxing in the sun on the piers.
At the time, DoC marine species and threats team science adviser Laura Boren told the Bay of Plenty Times leopard seals were generally found around Antarctica but it was not uncommon to see them around the New Zealand mainland.
Ms Boren said leopard seals were one of the top three marine predators with massive heads and powerful jaws.
"They are the ones you want to stay away from."