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Juan Fernández fur seal

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Title: Juan Fernández fur seal  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Eared seal, Fur seal, Juan Fernández Islands, Pinniped, List of marine mammal species
Collection: Arctocephalinae, Eared Seals, Endemic Fauna of the Juan Fernández Islands, Mammals of Chile, Megafauna, Pinnipeds of South America
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Juan Fernández fur seal

Juan Fernández fur seal
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Suborder: Pinnipedia
Family: Otariidae
Subfamily: Arctocephalinae
Genus: Arctocephalus
Species: A. philippii
Binomial name
Arctocephalus philippii
Peters, 1866
Juan Fernández fur seal range

The Juan Fernández fur seal (Arctocephalus philippii) breeds on the Juan Fernández Islands off the coast of Chile and is named after those islands where they were first found.[2] It is the second-smallest of the otariid seal (the closely related Galápagos fur seal is smaller still). Discovered by navigator Juan Fernández in the 16th century, the seals became a target for sealers in the Maritime Fur Trade era. They were thought extinct in the mid-20th century until a population of 200 was found. The population was protected and has grown quickly. There are now believed to be at least 10,000 animals on and around the island.


  • Description 1
  • Reproduction 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4


The seals have a relatively robust body and a long, slender and pointed snout. They have stubby foreflippers and hindflippers, and a mane of long, coarse guard hairs from the top of the head to the shoulders. Adult males are dark brown to black, but the guard hairs can have yellow or tan tips. The males also have a more bulbous nose than the females and juveniles, as well as being longer than the adult females. The adult females have an overall brown colour, but the tips of the guard hairs may fade to yellow or tan. The females are less robust at the chest, neck and shoulders than the adult males. Pups are born black, but become lighter during the first few years. Males range from 150 to 200 cm long and weigh about 146 kg. Females are about 240 cm long and weigh about 50 kg.[2]


Breeding behavior is very territorial, especially the males who fight to maintain their territory. Females mate within their territory of the resident male. Mating season occurs during November and December which is only done once a year. The pregnancy lasts for a little less than a year. The females gives birth to only one pup, and nurses them from about 8 to 12 months.[2]


  1. ^ Aurioles, D. & Trillmich, F. (2008). Arctocephalus philippii. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 30 January 2009.
  2. ^ a b c Handysides, Daniel. "Arctocephalus philippii Juan Fernandez fur seal". University of Michigan Museum of Zoology. ADW. 
  • Randall R. Reeves, Brent S. Stewart, Phillip J. Clapham and James A. Powell (2002). National Audubon Society Guide to Marine Mammals of the World. Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. ISBN 0375411410. 

External links

  • ARKive - (Arctocephalus philippii)images and movies of the Juan Fernández fur seal
  • Photos of the Juan Fernandez fur seal

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