The muzzle, throat and belly are light grey scattered with dark grey and black spots. read more A big leopard seal was picking a gruesome fight to the death with the stern of one of the base's Zodiacs. (600 kg). Environmental Impact Assessment approvals, Australia and the Antarctic Treaty System, Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources, What happens before departure & on arrival at station, Message for family and friends of expeditioners, Classification of scientific publications, Antarctic Strategy and Action Plan: Prime Minister’s Foreword. Leopard seals are very large, nearly as long as walruses (though not nearly as heavy). Leopard Seal – Hydrurga leptonyx Description. Leopard seals eat almost anything, including penguins, fish, squid, and crustaceans. Fast Facts: Leopard Seal Scientific Name: Hydrurga leptonyx Common Names: Leopard seal, sea leopard Basic Animal Group: Mammal Size: 10-12 feet Weight: 800-1000 pounds Lifespan: 12-15 years Diet: Carnivore Habitat: Sea around Antarctica Population: 200,000 Conservation Status: … They also love to eat penguins. Leopard seals eat almost anything, including penguins, fish, squid, and crustaceans. Leopard seals hunt krill, fish, squid, a number of penguin species, and smaller seal species. https://oceanwide-expeditions.com/to-do/wildlife/leopard-seal One leopard seal, captured near Sydney, had eaten a fully grown platypus. Leopard seals have very individual tastes. Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment. 2.) Other leopard seals prefer a sub-Antarctic menu migrating north to Heard Island to feed on penguin and seal pups there. They can also be about 11 feet long. Females are usually slightly larger than males. They have a color gradient that shifts from white on their underside, to dark gray on their backs. Catching the prey, the leopard can reach speeds of up to 40 km / h. Because of the streamlined shape of the body, this seal resembles a torpedo, which facilitates movement at high speed. Some remain near penguin colonies to capture prey, while others prefer to eat crabeater seal pups. The zodiac vainly blew air in the seal's face as its teeth tore into the rear pontoon. Mugger crocodiles reportedly killed an adult leopard in Rajasthan. Their life expectancy is anywhere between twelve and fifteen years. They kill penguins and small seals by grabbing them with their feet. Amos Nachoum has dipped below the waves with some of the ocean's top predators, but swimming with leopard seals remains one of his most cherished experiences. The only predator of the leopard seal is the occasional killer whale and humans. Heron Island is a subtropical island in the southern part of the Great Barrier Reef — quite some distance from the Antarctic! Young leopard seals eat krill, squid and fish. Many of them have been hunted though for sport as well to get rid of them due to their behaviors. Larger leopard seals eat krill (estimated 45% of diet), other seals (30%), penguins (10%) and fish (10%). Diet and feeding. A large leopard seal attacked Thomas Orde-Lees (1877–1958), a member of Sir Ernest Shackleton's Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition of 1914–1917 when the expedition was camping on the sea ice. It is best not to be in the open waters where Leopard Seals are known to live. . Leopard seals can live up to 26 years in the wild. Big Animals – Leopard Seals, Antarctica. Fierce and feline-looking, leopard seals are named for their distinctive black-spotted coat and strong, toothy jaws that resemble those of the big cat. In the winter months, young leopard seals from the south visit Macquarie Island. The head is large and the jaws open widely revealing exceptionally long canines and unusually complex sharply pointed molars. . The females will carry a pup for eleven months and then deliver it in a hole they have dug in the ice. They are perhaps the greatest wanderers of the Antarctic seals with sightings in Tasmania and a northern record at Heron Island. These seals swim so fast they can "jump" out of the sea onto the edge of the ice to get prey such as penguins. They are dark gray in color and can weigh up to 1,300 pounds. Typical weights range from approximately 440 lbs. They are fast moving on land so they have no trouble catching their desired prey either on land or in the water. Well, how about the leopard seal? The Leopard Seal also evolved as a predator. And like their namesake, these seals are fast and ferocious hunters—Antarctica’s apex predator along with killer whales. The Leopard Seal is the second largest of all seals out there. Female leopard seals of 6 years or more give birth to a single pup on the sea-ice in November after a 9 month gestation, and then return to the ocean to feed. Leopard seals rank alongside killer whales as Antarctica's top predator. Named after their spotted coats and fearsome jaws, leopard seals have large, reptilian heads and streamlined bodies. Covered in a thin coat of fur, this species can be identified by the dark gray or black colors on the head and back and the white or light gray around the belly. Our researchers are interested in the factors that drive the cyclic nature of the occurrence of leopard seals at Macquarie Island and Tasmania, and are studying seal movements within the pack-ice zone. For some reason leopard seals like the tail ends of … The seal had the hapless craft in its massive jaws. Leopard seals are second only amongst seal species to elephant seals in terms of size. Leopard seals have unique cheek teeth that are shaped to allow them to strain krill from the water. The pup may weigh in excess of 30kg. Populations of this type of animal at the moment nothing is threatened. And they're not exactly big teddy bears either, Leopard seals are as aggressive in nature as they are big in size. So it was a big surprise to discover wild leopard seals feeding alongside one another while eating king penguins at South Georgia, a remote island in the southern Atlantic Ocean. They love krill, fish, and other items found in the waters. The only natural predator of leopard seals is the killer whale. We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. The waters of Antarctica hover between 28–50°F and it’s going to take something pretty special to get most of us diving in that water. These seals swim so fast they can "jump" out of the sea onto the edge of the ice to get prey such as penguins. Sexual maturity occurs at the age of 3-4 years, which is quite early. Humans that observe Leopard Seals, known not to get too close to them due to their aggressive nature. Their coloration is typically a dark grey on top, with a lighter shade below, with a spotted pattern. It is believed there are series of grunts and calls though those are a way to appeal to the females by the males though. They are very strong animals and they tend to take over the areas where they reside. Their loose jaw can open as far as 160 degrees. . The leopard seal has very large fore-flippers, making it a fast and graceful swimmer, but clumsy on land. The leopard seal can grow from a length range of 7.9 to 11.5 feet and a weight range of 440 to 1,320 pounds. They are dark gray in color and can weigh up to 1,300 pounds. the leopard seals jaws are about the size of 6 human jaws. Leopard seals are long, smooth, carnivorous mammals with a rounded head, big snout, large mouths, and flippers on all four feet (which enclose both their elbows and knees). . Leopard seals (and all seals) are carnivores.carnivore. Leopard seals are solitary animals that inhabit pack-ice surrounding the Antarctic continent. Some of the vocalisations made by leopard seals includes grunts and growls. Well, how about the leopard seal? In the wild it is reasonable for one to live approximately 26 years. This tells you that it is a big animal. There are approximately 250,000 of them. The "sea leopard", about 12 ft (3.7 m) long and 1,100 lb (500 kg), chased Orde-Lees on the ice. It is believed this is due to them feeling threatened rather than finding something that they are interested in eating. Leopard seals are long, smooth, carnivorous mammals with a rounded head, big snout, large mouths, and flippers on all four feet (which enclose both their elbows and knees). Because leopard seals are solitary animals that live in the Antarctic pack ice, little is known of their biology. The Leopard seal is the second biggest of the seal species. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mammals/l/leopard-seal Then they will thrash them back and forth against the ground until they are dead. Some of them though prefer the warmer climates. A big leopard seal was picking a gruesome fight to the death with the stern of one of the base's Zodiacs. Hydrurga leptonyx means “slender-clawed water-worker.” There’s still a lot to learn about Leopard Seals, like specifics of their mating habits. 5.) Leopard seals can grow to be as big as eleven feet long, and eight hundred forty pounds. The Leopard Seal is considered to be the most aggressive of all the species out there. The leopard seal is easily identified: designed for speed, the body is slender and the fore-flippers long. Most of the time though they have disappeared to do their own thing after the mating has taken place. Leopard seals (Hydrurga leptonyx) are large but slender seals, with big heads and jaws that give them a frightening, dinosaur-like appearance. Other animals don’t bother the offspring but at times the males can show aggression towards them. One large adult leopard was grabbed and consumed by a large crocodile while attempting to hunt along a bank in Kruger National Park. They only live in small groups which is also quite different from other species of seals. Males (2.8m; 320kg) are generally slightly smaller than females (3.0m; 370kg). There have been some reports of attacks from Leopard Seals on humans while they are in the water. The Leopard Seal is an Excellent Swimmer. Female leopard seals of 6 years or more give birth to a single pup on the sea-ice in November after a 9 month gestation, and then return to the ocean to feed. Leopard seals are not social animals. Like the crabeater seals, leopard seals have unusual teeth for straining krill from the water. How large is a leopard seal? Leopard seals may live for 26 years or more. The diet of the Leopard seal is similar to others in many ways. Due to the aggressive nature of the Leopard Seals, there is still plenty we don’t know about their reproduction. Orcas are the only known predator of leopard seals. Therefore they do as they please both on land and in the water. The leopard seal, also known as the 'sea leopard', is absolutely massive! 7 Stupendous Leopard Seal Facts Leopard Seals got their common name from their collection of black Leopard-like spots. The leopard seal also referred to as the sea leopard, is the second largest species of seal in the Antarctic (after the southern elephant seal).. . They … The females do take very good care of their young pups until they are able to care for themselves. 3.) A male leopard seal is about three meters long and 300 kilograms in weight – and the weight of a female leopard can reach half a ton. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging. Seal diversity The Baikal seal ( Phoca sibirica ) of Lake Baikal in Siberia, Russia, is the smallest at 1.1–1.4 metres (3.6–4.6 feet) long and 50–130 kg (110–290 pounds), but some female fur seals weigh less. Leopard seals have unique cheek teeth that are shaped to allow them to strain krill from the water. Fierce and feline-looking, leopard seals are named for their distinctive black-spotted coat and strong, toothy jaws that resemble those of the big cat. The main predators of seals are killer whales, polar bears, leopard seals, large sharks, and human beings. However, on average, it weighs around 840 pounds. In colour, the leopard seal shades from almost black to almost blue on the flanks. They are very strong animals and they tend to take over the areas where they reside. An observation of a male elephant seal having killed a leopard seal at Heard Island has been reported, however, this is likely to be an uncommon occurrence. Leopard seals, believe it or not, have lots of spots. Typically leopard seals chase or grab penguins in the water and thrash the captured bird back and forth until the skin peels away. For instance, leopard seals make a living hunting down penguins and even other seals. Leopard seals are the third largest seal in the world Female leopard seals, the larger of the two sexes, can grow up to 590 kg (1,300 pounds) and 3.8m meters (10 feet) long. The leopard seal is known for its voracious appetite, and it can be a quite intimidating character due to its immense size. They may occupy some sub-Antarctic islands year-round including Heard Island. It can take several months during the pregnancy for her to complete this digging process in preparation for the offspring. The zodiac vainly blew air in the seal's face as its teeth tore into the rear pontoon. The leopard seal is named for its black-spotted coat.The pattern is similar to that of the famous big cat, though the seal’s coat is gray rather than golden in color. But, it also feeds opportunistically. In the water they are able to swallow fish or to tear off large portions of big prey they find in there. When it is time to reproduce, the Leopard Seals will come together in larger groups. Nile crocodiles prey on leopards occasionally. It was called a Leopard seal because it has spots that are almost similar to those of a leopard. An adult leopard was recovered from the stomach of a 5.5 m (18 ft 1 in) Burmese python. However, they are also the only species of seal that will also consume other species. Their loose jaw can open as far as 160 degrees. Leopard seals average lifespan is about 26 years. The leopard seal (Hydrurga leptonyx) is easily identified by its long slim body and comparatively large fore-flippers. Leopard seals are solitary outside of their mating period when large numbers gather on pack ice. Covered in a thin coat of fur, this species can be identified by the dark gray or black colors on the head and back and the white or light gray around the belly. For some reason leopard seals like the tail ends of … The females are larger than the males, but the male individuals still quite large compared to other types of seals. With his dinner, the leopard seal does not stand on ceremony. There has only been one recorded death to humans and that was 4 years ago. The seal had the hapless craft in its massive jaws. Large females may reach lengths in excess of 3.5m and weigh over 500kg. In fact, it isn’t uncommon to see them alone or only with one or two companions. 1.) Their bodies are long and slender, and their heads appear to be almost too large for their serpent-like bodies. Like the crabeater seals, leopard seals … In winter their most important food is krill. They can grow to 10 feet in length and weigh as much as 1,300 pounds! The leopard seal is easily identified: designed for speed, the body is slender and the fore-flippers long. You will find this type of seal living in the very cold regions of the Antarctic. Most human perceptions of leopard seals are shaped by historic encounters between humans and leopard seals, that have occurred since the Heroic Age of Antarctic exploration. The de… They can also be about 11 feet long. They only natural predators that the Leopard Seals have are some species of sharks and the killer whales. (200 kg) to 1320 lbs. The prey most commonly includes various species of penguins, squid, fish, and even other species of seals. The Leopard Seal is the second largest of all seals out there. This powerful creature hunts comparatively large prey, in relation to its body size. The leopard seal’s disproportionately large head, massive jaws, impressive teeth and tremendous gape give it a snake-like appearance. They also eat the pups of other seal species including crabeater, Weddell and southern fur seals. Being seals, not sea lions, they do not have visible ear flaps. The females are larger than the males, but the male individuals still quite large compared to other types of seals. Don’t Feed the Photographers! And like their namesake, these seals are fast and ferocious hunters—Antarctica’s apex predator along with killer whales. However, attacks on humans are rare. They also eat cephalopods, fish and other seal species, especially newly-weaned crabeater seals during December and January. Leopard seals have a varied diet. The leopard seal has an extremely long, muscular body, with a hugeset of jaws. Leopard seals have been identified in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa where it is much warmer than the Antarctic. The Leopard Seal is the second largest of all seals out there. The remaining carcass is then consumed. Leopard seals are apex predators presenting a potential risk to humans. They are dark gray in color and can weigh up to 1,300 pounds. Leopard seals eat an amazingly large variety of food, using their wide gaping mouths and massive jaws to great effect. Adult leopard seals range from about 7.9-11.5 ft. (2.4-3.5 m) long. A leopard seal eats a variety of things including humans... Nah just joking. Over this base color, leopard seals are dappled with gray or black spots. There aren’t very high numbers left of Leopard Seals which is why conservation efforts for them exist. Now in the world of them there are about 400 thousand individuals. Leopard seals are similar in length to a Northern Walrus but are slightly less than half as massive in terms of weight. The Portal of Life on Earth, Biodiversity, Animal Facts, Designed by Elegant Themes | Powered by WordPress. On top of this, they may have even been cooperating with each other to eat these enormous seabirds. . 4.) How big is the leopard seal jaw? They can also be about 11 feet long. Are leopard seals carnivores or herbivores? and reach lengths of nearly 12 feet. The head is large and the jaws open widely revealing exceptionally long canines and unusually complex sharply pointed molars. These seals can swim up to 25 mph! They prey on krill, fish, squid, Antarctic species of penguins, sea birds, crabeater, Weddell, young elephant seals, and fur seals. Big Animals – Leopard Seals, Antarctica The waters of Antarctica hover between 28–50°F and it’s going to take something pretty special to get most of us diving in that water. We don’t know how the mates select each other. They can weigh over 1300 lbs. The pup may weigh in excess of 30kg. 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