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Articles on Seals

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Female elephant seals take seven-month feeding trips during which they balance danger, starvation and exhaustion. Dan Costa

Risk versus reward on the high seas – skinny elephant seals trade safety for sustenance

By measuring how and when elephant seals sleep, researchers were able to figure out how elephant seals change their risk-taking behavior as they gain weight.
Jaime Bran/Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

Scientists thought these seals evolved in the north. 3-million-year-old fossils from New Zealand suggest otherwise

This newly discovered ancient monk seal is challenging previous theories about how and where monachine seals evolved. It’s the biggest breakthrough in seal evolution research in about 70 years.
A pod of narwhals (Monodon monoceros) in central Baffin Bay. Narwhals are the most vulnerable animals to increased ship traffic in the Arctic Ocean. Kristin Laidre/University of Washington

As Arctic ship traffic increases, narwhals and other unique animals are at risk

Climate change is shrinking Arctic sea ice and opening the region to ship traffic. Whales, seals and other marine mammals could be at risk unless nations adopt rules to protect them.
Animals in the western Arctic have higher levels of mercury in their bodies than those in the eastern Arctic. (Shutterstock)

How we solved an Arctic mercury mystery

A new study demystifies regional differences in mercury levels in marine animals in the Canadian Arctic.
Wild grey seal eating a large Atlantic salmon after first peeling back the skin using its teeth and claws. Robert Harris

Sharp claws helped ancient seals conquer the oceans

Northern seals use strong claws to tear apart large prey and this gives us clues about how the earliest seals likely behaved when they first began feeding in water.

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