New Zealand Sea Lion - Also called: Hooker's Sea Lion
Height: Males: 2 m (7 feet) Females: 1.5 m (5.5 to 6 feet) the average adult.
Weight: Males: 200 kg (990 lbs) Females: 40 kg (350 lbs) the average adult.
- Male: dark olive brown with large roundish head and short muzzle. Heavy coarse hair on huge neck and shoulders.
- Female: Cream grayish white with darker areas on face and flippers.
- Both sexes have long abundant whiskers.
- “Eared” seal, visible earflap.
- In the water front flippers are used for propulsion while their hind flippers for steering.
- On land the front flippers can be turned forwards to carry their weight and are used to walk making them agile often galloping along.
- Pup is born with a black coat.
- Feed mainly on squid, octopus, fish, lobster, crabs and occasionally penguins.
- Breeds on islands and coasts of New Zealand and South Australia.
- Adult males haul ashore and establish territories on the beach. Males become mature at approximately 10 years of age, females at 5 years.
- Returning females or cows are herded together by the dominant males in harems of approximately 5 to 15 females.
- The males defend their territory and harems from other immature and non-breeding males or bachelors.
- Females produce one black furry pup in late November.
- Pups weigh only 4 kg at birth, grow fast and double their weight in about 10 weeks on their mother’s milk.
- Females locate their pup by vocalizations then confirm the identification with scent cues.
- Pups stay with their mother for almost 1 year.
- Non-breeding gathering of seals is called a herd.
- Colonies are along the southern and eastern coasts of Australia, on the shores of New Zealand, Tasmania and Chatham Islands.