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Bearded Seal Erignathus barbatus


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Bearded Seal
credit: Chris 73

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Family: Phocidae, Hair Seals view all from this family

Description A large seal with a small head and prominent whiskers. Foreflippers are square-shaped. Whiskers are straight when wet and curved when dry. Female may be slightly longer than male. Adults are gray or brownish in color, sometimes with red on the face or flippers. Newborns are dark-colored with white patches on head and back. Juveniles often have irregular splotches of color on their heads and bodies.

Dimensions 2.0-2.6m, 225-360kg

Breeding Females begin breeding at 5-6 years of age, and produce a single young annually thereafter.

Habitat Offshore waters

Range Alaska

Discussion Feeds on crustaceans, mollusks, and fish caught at the sea bottom. Lives alone or in small groups at low densities on moving ice and in open water.