Photo by Claudia Lanpher
Harbor Seal (Phoca vitulina), Radio Road ponds, Redwood Shores, San Mateo County, California - 17 July 2011. This animal was hauled out on the edge of a slough, right next to a dog park fence. It did not appear injured or sick and a call to the Marine Mammal Center revealed that this is a well-known individual that forages here regularly. The red-orange coloration to the fur is unusual for this species but is apparently common in the San Francisco Bay Area due to iron oxide deposits - see Allen, S.G., Stephenson, M., Risebrough, R.W., Fancher, L., Schiller, A., and Smith, D. (1993) Red-pelaged harbor seals of the San Francisco Bay region. J. Mammalogy 74(3): 588-593
One of two hanging around looking at things. Spotted grey and black.
The Common Seal (Phoca vitulina), also known as the Harbor Seal or alternately spelled Harbour Seal, is a true seal found along temperate and Arctic marine coastlines of the Northern hemisphere. They are found in coastal waters of the northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans as well as those of the Baltic and North Seas, making them the mos