South American Fur Seal
name = South American Fur Seal
status = LR/lc
status_system = iucn2.3
image_width = 250px
image_caption = South American fur seals at Bristol Zoo Gardens, England
phylum = Chordata
genus = "
species = "A. australis"
binomial = "Arctocephalus australis"
binomial_authority = (Zimmermann, 1783)
range_map_caption = Distribution of South American Fur Seal
The South American Fur Seal ("Arctocephalus australis") is a species of
fur sealthat breeds on the coasts of Chileand Argentina. The total population is around 250,000.
The population of South American fur seals in 1999 was estimated at 390,000, a drop from a 1987 estimation of 500,000. Although overall species numbers are healthy, the downward trend is causing some concern. Uruguay has the largest numbers of seals along its coast, numbering over 200,000.
The South American fur seal has a dark grey coat of
fur. The males of the species are almost entirely this color, though they may have grey or tan grizzled markings. The femalesand sub-adult males have lighter grey or tan coloring on the chest and muzzle, and may have rust-brown or medium grey fur on their undersides. The muzzle is flat-topped and pointed, with a medium-sized nose. The nostrilsare forward-facing and the nose extends past the mouth. The ear pinnae are long and prominent, and the vibrissaeof adults are creamy white and of relatively short length. Adult males are larger than females, with a thicker neck and larger shoulders. Males also develop a maneof longer guard hairs on the head and shoulders. [ [http://ip30.eti.uva.nl/bis/marine_mammals.php?menuentry=soorten&id=35 Marine Mammals > Species: Arctocephalus australis (South american fur seal) ] ] Size of the seals varies based on region but on average, adult males measure up to 2 m long and weigh 150-200 kg and females measure up to 1.5 m long and weigh 30-60 kg. [ [http://marinebio.org/species.asp?id=312 South American Fur Seal, Arctocephalus australis at MarineBio.org ] ] Newborns are 60 to 65 cm and 3.5 to 5.5 kg.
The South American Fur seal is found on
neotropicalocean coasts from the Paracas Peninsulaof southern Perusouth to Cape Hornon the Pacific coast, and northward to southern Brazilon the Atlantic coast. They are also found on the Falkland Islands, Staten Island, and Escondida Island. [ [http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Arctocephalus_australis.html ADW: Arctocephalus australis: Information ] ] "Arctocephalus australis" prefer rocky shores and islands, particularly those with steep slopes, which provide shady areas where they can escape the heat of the sun. They have been found in sea caves in Peru, where some climb up to 15 meters to find a spot to rest.Anatomical information for the southern fur seals Arctocephalus spp., is scant (W. Pérez).
The South American fur seal may be featured on the upcoming CBBC television programme
Serious Ocean, in the Chilean Pacific region on the fur seal's range.
* William Pérez, Helena Katz, Martin Lima. Gross heart anatomy of Arctocephalus australis (Zimmerman, 1783)Anatomical Science International (OnlineEarly Articles).doi:10.1111/j.1447-073X.2007.00189.xhttp://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1447-073X.2007.00189.x
* [http://www.maniacworld.com/Fur-Seal-vs-Penguins.html Fur Seal Preys on Penguin]
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