Chordates •

Southern elephant seal

(Mirounga leonina)



The South Sea Elephant ( Mirounga leonina,Linnaeus 1758 ) is a carnivorous mammal belonging to the Phocidae family.At the present state of knowledge,it is the greatest representative ever existed of the superfamily of the pinnipeds.This pinniped owes its name,partly to its considerable size,but above all to the presence in males of a dilated nasal sac,which resembles a sort of short and squat proboscis,in reality it serves as a sounding board for the deep roars of the males in the reproductive period.The species is characterized by a remarkable sexual dimorphism,with females much smaller and lighter than males,which can even measure 6.5 meters,with a weight that can exceed 4 tons;the color of the hair varies from a light gray to light brown shade.The females measure about 2.8 meters in length and weigh about 900 kg on average.

Taxonomic tree:

Kingdom: Animalia
Class: Mammalia
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