Sea Lion / Otaria flavescens

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Sea lions can be distinguished from true seals because they have external ears and walk on their long mobile flippers

During the mating season, male sea lions won’t eat, but instead choose to focus entirely on protecting their territory and females

Sea lions have no need to drink; they obtain all the water they need from their food

Males are much larger than females with a thick, maned neck and large head, giving them a lion-like appearance. Both sexes have upturned snouts and external ears.

They are large and fearsome predators, but are preyed upon themselves by killer whales, which go so far as to beach themselves in pursuit of a sea lion pup.

Patagonian sea lions are carnivores, feeding primarily on schooling fish, such as anchovies and hake.

They will also feed on squid and octopus or on what is seasonally available. They occasionally prey on penguins and fur seal pups.Their foraging grounds are shallow areas within five miles of shore.

South American sea lions prefer open sandy or pebble beaches for resting on shore, and group in large numbers.

They will form smaller groups in rocky areas and sometimes make use of boat wharves for resting and sunning themselves.

The largest and most intimidating males establish harems of up to 18 females.

After 110 days the female will give birth to a single pup. The pups are born black, but change to brown as they mature and moult.