Southern Fur Seal

Kim and Grace

Southern Fur Seal

Antarctic fur seals are more accuraely called'Southern Fur Seals'. Fur Seals are the smallest seals and closely related to dogs and seal lions , able to walk on all fours.


The scientific name of Southern Fur Seals is Arctocephalus forsteri.

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Appearance




In appearance and manner they resemble a large dog.This seal has slanted eyes, small nears and thick, soft skin. They are able to bring their rear flippers under thier body on thier fore-flippers and so are much more agile on land compared to others such as elephant, wedell crabeater seals. The males can reach 200kg and can be up to 4 times larger than the female. The thick coat of the fur seal helps insulate it from the cold.


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Habitat

Why Fur Seals are capable of travelling on and hauling out on ice, it's unusaul to see them there . During the breeding season they primarily reside on sheltered rocky, sandy and gravelly beaches on sub- Antarctica islands with lush tussock grass clumps.


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Breeding

The breeding for Antartica fur seal occurs from November to January. During the Antartica summer, with males arriving on land early to compete for breeding territory. The males are feircly territorial, using physical threat displays, vocalisation and their formadable canine teeth to agressivly defend their access to extrus females. They breed with the cows who are on their territory.


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Diet

Southern Fur Seals feed on moderately - sized fish, birds ( including penguins) , squid and krill . Krill is the staple diet of the fur seal.


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Other info

*Leopard seals and orcas are known to eat fur seals.


*The cycle of nursing and feeding last for about 4 months


*The fur seal is the only eared seal.


*The bulls stake out their own territory on the beach and defend it.


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