Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) is the largest member from the family of eared seals. It is also the only member from its own genus. The adult males of the sea lions are called bulls while females are known as cows.
The color of the adult steller sea lions can range from light-yellow to orange-brown. However, the pups are entirely black in color. Unlike females, the male steller sea lions have flattened nose and wider foreheads. They also have white whiskers on their snout.
The average size of an adult male sea lion is up to 9.8 feet in length and weighs around 1,200 pounds while the females can grow up to an average length of 8.2 feet and weigh around 580 pounds. The pup has a length of about 3.3 feet and weighs around 50 pounds.
On average, the lifespan of a female steller sea lion is around 30 years while that of a male sea lion is 18 years.
The maturity age of a female seller sea lion is around 5 years and she gives birth to only 1 pup in a year. A mother may suckle her pups for up to 4 years.
The distribution of steller sea lions extends from the Russian Kuril Islands and up to the Gulf of Alaska and Californian coast of Año Nuevo. During summer, they migrate to the South.
They inhabit cooler temperate waters of the North Pacific. They form breeding colonies called rookeries, on sandy or rocky shores.
These sea lions are opportunistic eaters. They tend to prey on octopuses, seals, squid and fish. However, they usually eat species of fish like Alaska Pollock, sculpins, grayfish, caplin, Atka mackerel, herring and sea perch.
For molting (shedding old skin or fur), these sea lions tend to haul out. In order to defend their territory, male sea lions do not eat anything for up to 1 to 2 months.
The predators of stellar sea lions are the orcas and the great white.
Other Names: Steller’s sea lion, Northern sea lion