In Mundomar you will be able to see a wide population of seals from two different orders: the grey seal or halichoerus grypus and the harbour seal or phoca vitulina. Both groups belong to the same pinniped family of sea mammals used to live in aquatic environments most of the time. .
Seals inhabit coastal regions worldwide, except for the tropical areas. Their long fusiform bodies are adapted to swimming. Their forelimbs are short and plane and are to be used as flippers when they are in the water. Their movements on the ground are awkward, but some species are able to move at high speed by crawling. Their hind limbs present a backwards permanent position and cannot retract. Contrary to other pinniped animals, seals do not have external ears.
Their fur is usually short and dense in adults. However, their body warm is conserved thanks to the thick fat layer they have under their skin, which can represent a quarter of their total weight. Some species do not have any fur.
They can be seen in the North Atlantic Ocean. It is the only species within their genus.
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They live in the coastline of warm and cold seas in the North Hemisphere. They can be seen in coastal areas of the North Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific, the Baltic Sea and the North Sea and so they have become the most widespread amongst the pinnipeds.
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Seal species are very differently structured socially. Contrary to the sea lions, they do not live in big colonies. Some species pair off in monogamous couples, other species associate in small tribes and elephant seals group together in herds made of a dominant male and its harem. They are efficient predators of fish, crustaceans and cephalopods. Sometimes they also eat penguins and small seals.
Seals are able to swim long distances and to dive into deep waters to catch their prey. The long distances they cover to find their feeding impose a particular way of breastfeeding. The seals’ milk is extremely rich in calories. In this way, babies can survive during the long absences of their mothers.
Seals are migratory animals. They travel in groups made of about 100 individuals and prefer to live in coastal areas, bays, etc.
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