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Northern Elephant Seals

Scientific Name: Mirounga angustirostrisesealtagging

 

Elephant seals are named for the large, trunk-like proboscis which characterizes adult males.  They are the largest living seals, although the northern species is somewhat smaller than the southern species.  Adult males may grow to over 4 m (13 ft.) in length, and weigh up to 2,000 kg (4,500 lbs.), while females grow to 3 m (10 ft.), and 600 kg (1,500 lbs.).

 

Northern elephant seals are found throughout the North Pacific, from Baja California, Mexico to the Aleutian Islands.  They spend a significant portion of their time far offshore, making repeated dives hundreds of meters deep.  In winter they return to their breeding beaches in California and Mexico to breed; and they come ashore again in spring or summer, for 2-3 weeks, to molt their fur.

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