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Sea Lions San Francisco

Sea Lions San Francisco (Animals)

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Tags: sea lion (12 pics)

Sea lions are any of seven species in seven genera of modern pinnipeds including one extinct species (the Japanese sea lion). Sea lions are characterized by the presence of external ear pinnae (ear-flaps), long front flippers, and the ability to walk on all four flippers on land. Their range extends from the subarctic to tropical waters of the global ocean in both the northern and southern hemispheres with the notable exception of the Atlantic Ocean.

Interactions with humans

Some species of sea lion are readily trainable and are often a popular attraction at zoos and aquariums. The archetypal circus seal performing behaviors such as throwing and catching balls on its nose and clapping is almost always a sea lion.

The government of Japan has set a quota of 116 kills per year in Hokkaido, as sea lions are seen as a threat to commercial fisheries. International environmentalists[which?] and local fishery advocates continue to debate the issue.

Sea lions have been trained by the U.S. Navy's Marine Mammal Program, based in San Diego, to detain scuba divers.

Sea lion attacks on humans are rare. In a highly unusual attack in 2007 (13 years ago) in Western Australia a sea lion leapt from the water and seriously mauled a 13-year old girl surfing behind a speedboat. The sea lion appeared to be preparing for a second attack when the girl was rescued. An Australian marine biologist opined the sea lion may have viewed the girl "like a rag doll toy" to be played with. In San Francisco where an increasingly large population of California sea lions crowds docks along San Francisco Bay, there have been incidents in recent years of swimmers being bitten on the leg by large aggressive males, possibly as a territorial act.

The Moche people of ancient Peru worshipped the sea and its animals. They often depicted sea lions in their art.


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