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|New Zealand Fur Seal|
New Zealand Seal
Fur seals make up one of the two distinct groups of mammals called "seals". Both the fur seals and the true seals are members of the Pinnipedia, which is usually regarded as a suborder of the order Carnivora but sometimes as an independent order. However, the fur seals, like their close relatives the sea lions, retain some ability to walk on land as their hind limbs can be brought forward under the body to bear the animal's weight, and retain small but visible external ears.
The fur seals and the sea lions as a group make up the family Otariidae, and are called eared seals or walking seals to distinguish them from the earless true seals of the family Phocidae. The fur seals alone make up the Arctocephalinae subfamily.
Northern Fur Seal, Callorhinus ursinus
Antarctic Fur Seal, Arctocephalus gazella
Guadalupe Fur Seal, Arctocephalus townsendi
Juan Fernandez Fur Seal, Arctocephalus philippii
Galapagos Fur Seal, Arctocephalus galapagoensis
Cape Fur Seal or Australian Fur Seal, Arctocephalus pusillus
New Zealand Fur Seal, Arctocephalus forsteri
Subantarctic Fur Seal, Arctocephalus tropicalis
South American Fur Seal, Arctocephalus australis
The New Zealand (or Southern) Fur Seal is a species of fur seal found around the south coast of Australia, the coast of the South Island of New Zealand, and some of the small islands to the south and east of there. The species has two common names because the Australian and New Zealand populations don't overlap. Although the two populations show some genetic differences, their morphologies are very similar indeed, and thus remain classed as a single species.
These seals were widely hunted from shortly after the European discovery of New Zealand until the late 19th Century. The population of the New Zealand seal fell to levels under 10% of the original numbers.