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Harbor Seal

November 12, 2022

Harbor Seals, also known as true seals or the common seal, find their habitats in the coastlines of temperate environments and the Arctic. They can be found on the coasts of the northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, as well as the Baltic and North Seas. The common seal has a coat of either silvery white, brown, tan, or gray.

Fun Facts:

  • To maintain their body temperature, they have a layer of fat underneath their skin called blubber.
  • The female gestation period is pretty much the same as that of a human female – nine months.
  • Seal pups are able to swim within hours after birth.
  • Their character is friendly and playful.
  • Their resting spots are familiar territory to them and are quite varied, with rocky areas being the most common but icy, sandy, and muddy areas as well.
  • Sealing, the cruel practice of hunting seals, is now illegal in many countries.
  • The common seal population is roughly 350-500,000, so they are in abundance. However, one particular subspecies, the Ungava Seal native to Northern Québec, is endangered.
  • Seals, dogs and bears all share a common ancestor.
  • The Harbor Seal prefers prey fish such as salmon, shrimp, cod, mackerel, and various mollusks.
  • The mothers are the sole nurturers of baby seals.
  • Seals can dive as deep as 1,600 feet and stay underwater for up to 30 minutes.
  • Seals' bodies are evolutionarily adapted to hunt for particular food sources, such as long necks for catching fish and whiskers by navigating using pressure waves.



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