Guadalupe fur seals, floating upside down underwater over a rocky reef covered with golden kelp at Guadalupe Island, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe)

Juveniles, Guadalupe fur seals, floating upside down underwater over a rocky reef covered with golden kelp at Guadalupe Island, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe), Mexico.

Guadalupe fur seal, floating upside down under the ocean's surface at Guadalupe Island, watching the photographer and looking for passing predators, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe)

Adult male, Guadalupe fur seal, floating upside down under the ocean's surface at Guadalupe Island, watching the photographer and looking for passing predators, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe), Mexico.

California sea lions underwater, Coronados Islands, Baja California, Mexico, Zalophus californianus, Coronado Islands (Islas Coronado)

California sea lions underwater, Coronados Islands, Baja California, Mexico

California sea lion, La Jolla, Zalophus californianus

California sea lion, La Jolla

California sea lions, La Jolla, Zalophus californianus

California sea lions, La Jolla

A northern elephant seal hovers underwater over a rocky bottom  along the coastline of Guadalupe Island, Mirounga angustirostris, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe)

A northern elephant seal hovers underwater over a rocky bottom along the coastline of Guadalupe Island.

Steller sea lion underwater, Norris Rocks, Hornby Island, British Columbia, Canada, Eumetopias jubatus

Steller sea lion underwater, Norris Rocks, Hornby Island, British Columbia, Canada

Steller sea lion underwater, Norris Rocks, Hornby Island, British Columbia, Canada, Eumetopias jubatus

Steller sea lion underwater, Norris Rocks, Hornby Island, British Columbia, Canada

Steller sea lions underwater, Norris Rocks, Hornby Island, British Columbia, Canada, Eumetopias jubatus

Steller sea lions underwater, Norris Rocks, Hornby Island, British Columbia, Canada

Killer whale attacking sea lion.  Biggs transient orca and California sea lion, Orcinus orca, Zalophus californianus, Palos Verdes

Killer whale attacking sea lion. Biggs transient orca and California sea lion.

Bull elephant seal exits the water to retake his position on the beach.  He shows considerable scarring on his chest and proboscis from many winters fighting other males for territory and rights to a harem of females.  Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon

Male elephant seal with considerable scarring from fighting other males for territory and mates. Central California. Mirounga angustirostris.

Steller sea lions (Northern sea lions) gather on rocks.  Steller sea lions are the largest members of the Otariid (eared seal) family.  Males can weigh up to 2400 lb, females up to 770 lb, Eumetopias jubatus, Chiswell Islands, Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska

Steller sea lions (Northern sea lions) gather on rocks. Steller sea lions are the largest members of the Otariid (eared seal) family. Males can weigh up to 2400 lb., females up to 770 lb.

Young California sea lion pups underwater, Sea of Cortez, Mexico, Zalophus californianus

Young California sea lion pups underwater, Sea of Cortez, Mexico

Pacific harbor seal, on sand at the edge of the sea, Phoca vitulina richardsi, La Jolla, California

Pacific harbor seal, on sand at the edge of the sea.

Northern elephant seal, Mirounga angustirostris

Northern elephant seal.

Guadalupe fur seal pup sits on brown rocks along the coastline of Guadalupe Island, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe)

Guadalupe fur seal pup sits on brown rocks along the coastline of Guadalupe Island, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe), Mexico.

Northern fur seal swims through the cold waters and kelp forest of San Miguel Island, in California's northern Channel Islands, Callorhinus ursinus

Northern fur seal swims through the cold waters and kelp forest of San Miguel Island, in California's northern Channel Islands, Callorhinus ursinus.

Pacific harbor seal swims in the protected waters of Childrens Pool in La Jolla, California.  This group of harbor seals, which has formed a breeding colony at a small but popular beach near San Diego, is at the center of considerable controversy.  While harbor seals are protected from harassment by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and other legislation, local interests would like to see the seals leave so that people can resume using the beach, Phoca vitulina richardsi

Pacific harbor seal swims in the protected waters of Childrens Pool in La Jolla, California. This group of harbor seals, which has formed a breeding colony at a small but popular beach near San Diego, is at the center of considerable controversy. While harbor seals are protected from harassment by the Marine Mammal Protection Act and other legislation, local interests would like to see the seals leave so that people can resume using the beach.

Northern elephant seal, San Benito Islands, Mirounga angustirostris, San Benito Islands (Islas San Benito)

Northern elephant seal, San Benito Islands.

A bull elephant seal forceably mates (copulates) with a much smaller female, often biting her into submission and using his weight to keep her from fleeing.  Males may up to 5000 lbs, triple the size of females.  Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon

A bull elephant seal forceably mates (copulates) with a much smaller female, often biting her into submission and using his weight to keep her from fleeing. Males may up to 5000 lbs, triple the size of females. Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California.

Pacific harbor seal, mother and pup, Phoca vitulina richardsi, La Jolla, California

Pacific harbor seal, mother and pup.

Galapagos fur seal,  Darwin Island, Arctocephalus galapagoensis

Galapagos fur seal, Darwin Island.

Northern fur seal, Callorhinus ursinus, San Miguel Island

Northern fur seal, Callorhinus ursinus.

Guadalupe fur seal, Arctocephalus townsendi, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe)

Guadalupe fur seal.

Northern elephant seal, Mirounga angustirostris, Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe)

Northern elephant seal.

Galapagos fur seal, Arctocephalus galapagoensis, James Island

Galapagos fur seal.

Antarctic fur seals, adult male bull and female, illustrating extreme sexual dimorphism common among pinnipeds (seals, sea lions and fur seals), Arctocephalus gazella, Right Whale Bay

Antarctic fur seals, adult male bull and female, illustrating extreme sexual dimorphism common among pinnipeds (seals, sea lions and fur seals).

Southern elephant seal, juvenile.  The southern elephant seal is the largest pinniped, and the largest member of order Carnivora, ever to have existed.  It gets its name from the large proboscis (nose) it has when it has grown to adulthood, Mirounga leonina, Fortuna Bay

Southern elephant seal, juvenile. The southern elephant seal is the largest pinniped, and the largest member of order Carnivora, ever to have existed. It gets its name from the large proboscis (nose) it has when it has grown to adulthood.

Antarctic fur seal, on grass slopes high above Fortuna Bay, with the cloudy heights of South Georgia Island rising in the background, Arctocephalus gazella

Antarctic fur seal, on grass slopes high above Fortuna Bay, with the cloudy heights of South Georgia Island rising in the background.

Antarctic fur seal colony, on a sand beach alongside Right Whale Bay, with the mountains of South Georgia Island in the background, sunset, Arctocephalus gazella

Antarctic fur seal colony, on a sand beach alongside Right Whale Bay, with the mountains of South Georgia Island in the background, sunset.

Southern elephant seal watches gentoo penguin, Mirounga leonina, Pygoscelis papua, Livingston Island

Southern elephant seal watches gentoo penguin.

Galapagos fur seals,  Darwin Island, Arctocephalus galapagoensis

Galapagos fur seals, Darwin Island.