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Elephant Seal Research Paper

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As many may know, penguins in the Antarctic contain a rough life. In between November and February, every 251 Adélie breeding colonies line their nests with pebbles to prepare for their two eggs that they are about to lay. They make their nests slightly higher than the surrounding ground, therefore when the temperature ascends, causing the snow to melt, their breeding grounds do not flood. The male and female parent take equal duties caring for their eggs and chicks. These duties include protecting their egg or young from skuas, as well as feeding their chick regurgitated krill. After two months, the chicks become independent. Fully grown, this two foot three, eleven pounded bird, embrace their black backs and a white front, creating a tuxedo …show more content…
Estimated, there are about 650 000 southern elephant seals left in the world. With the scientific name Mirounga leonina, the elephant seal is the largest seal in existence. Males will weigh generally four tons, with the length of twenty inches. Whereas fully grown female seals weigh about one ton, and are relatively ten feet long. The name, “elephant seal”, not only comes from their massive weight, but also their trunk-like noses. When fully grown, the male adult will receive a nose identical to an elephant’s trunk, used to enhance their voice during breeding season. Neither baby seals nor females acquire the trunk-like noses the men do. Each year between August and November, the seals come back from the ocean to breed. After a gestation period of seven to nine months, a 94-pound solitary pup is delivered. Roughly twenty to twenty-five days later the pup is no longer dependent on their mother for food. The Males start their breeding at ages nine to twelve and will challenge each other aggressively for breeding rights. The females can give birth when they are approximately three or four years old. Not only do females mature averagely three years earlier than males, but they tend to live longer as well. Although not many baby seals live past four years, they can live up to twenty years as a female, or fourteen as a male. Elephant seals are very social animals; be that as it may, they live alone when they are out in the ocean. As a result of only being on land during breeding and molting season, the elephant seal is in water for 80% of their lives. The deepest dive recorded by an elephant seal was 2388 meters. Nevertheless, elephant seals tend to go no further than 1500 meters below the surface of the ocean. Averagely their dives are 300 to 600 meters for typically twenty minutes to an hour as they search for their favorite food; such as rays, squid, octopuses, eel, large fish and small sharks.

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