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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 seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight in the surf for access for mating females that are in estrous.  Such fighting among elephant seals can take place on the beach or in the water.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California California sea lion with scar around neck from monofiliment fishing line entanglement, Zalophus californianus, Sea of Cortez Sea otters mating.  The male holds the female's head or nose with his jaws during copulation. Visible scars are often present on females from this behavior.  Sea otters have a polygynous mating system. Many males actively defend territories and will mate with females that inhabit their territory or seek out females in estrus if no territory is established. Males and females typically bond for the duration of estrus, or about 3 days, Enhydra lutris, Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, Moss Landing, California Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females.  Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides.  Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females. Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem. They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides. Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Rissos dolphin.  Note distinguishing and highly variable skin and dorsal fin patterns, characteristic of this species. White scarring, likely caused by other Risso dolphins teeth, accumulates during the dolphins life so that adult Rissos dolphins are usually almost entirely white, Grampus griseus, San Diego, California Rissos dolphin.  Note distinguishing and highly variable skin and dorsal fin patterns, characteristic of this species. White scarring, likely caused by other Risso dolphins teeth, accumulates during the dolphins life so that adult Rissos dolphins are usually almost entirely white, Grampus griseus, San Diego, California Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males.  Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon This bull elephant seal, an old adult male, shows extreme 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 A bull sea lion shows a brand burned into its hide by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, to monitor it from season to season as it travels between California, Oregon and Washington.  Some California sea lions, such as this one C-704, prey upon migrating salmon that gather in the downstream waters and fish ladders of Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River.  The "C" in its brand denotes Columbia River. These  sea lions also form bachelor colonies that haul out on public docks in Astoria's East Mooring Basin and elsewhere, where they can damage or even sink docks, Zalophus californianus Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight in the surf for access for mating females that are in estrous.  Such fighting among elephant seals can take place on the beach or in the water.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females.  Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Rissos dolphin surfacing with eye showing. Note distinguishing and highly variable skin and dorsal fin patterns, characteristic of this species. White scarring, likely caused by other Risso dolphins teeth, accumulates during the dolphins life so that adult Rissos dolphins are almost entirely white.  San Diego, Grampus griseus Rissos dolphin, breaching. Note distinguishing and highly variable skin and dorsal fin patterns, characteristic of this species. White scarring, likely caused by other Risso dolphins teeth, accumulates during the dolphins life so that adult Rissos dolphins are almost entirely white. San Diego, Grampus griseus Ocean sunfish injured by boat prop with cleaner fishes, open ocean, Baja California, Mola mola Ocean sunfish injured by boat prop with cleaner fishes, open ocean, Baja California, Mola mola A Rissos dolphin leaps from the ocean in a full breach. Note distinguishing and highly variable skin and dorsal fin patterns, characteristic of this species.  White scarring, likely caused by other Risso dolphins teeth, accumulates during the dolphins life so that adult Rissos dolphins are almost entirely white.  Offshore near San Diego, Grampus griseus A freediving spearfisherman glides quietly through the kelp forest in search of game fish to hunt.  The most skilled spearfishermen forego the use of SCUBA, which is noisy underwater and scares away fish.  Instead, they practice breathhold techniques to move silently through the water.  San Clemente Island A bull elephant seal (adult male) surveys the beach.  The huge proboscis is characteristic of the species. Scarring from combat with other males.  Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Northern elephant seal, sunset.  Scars on neck and chest are from territorial battles with other adult males. Big Sur, Mirounga angustirostris, Gorda Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females. Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem. They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides. Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females. Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem. They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides. Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females. Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem. They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides. Sandy beach rookery, winter, Central California, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Bluechin Parrotfish, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla San Diego, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Eye Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Eye Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Fin Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Eye Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Eye Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Eye Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Bluechin Parrotfish Fin Detail, Scarus ghobban, Sea of Cortez, Isla Cayo, Baja California, Mexico Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females.  Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight in the surf for access for mating females that are in estrous.  Such fighting among elephant seals can take place on the beach or in the water.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Galapagos sea lion with shark bite, Zalophus californianus wollebacki, Zalophus californianus wollebaeki North Pacific humpback whale, adult male with bloody head nodules wounded from colliding with other escorts during competitive interactions, Megaptera novaeangliae, Maui Keel scar caused by F/V Jin Shiang Fa to coralline algae reef, Rose Atoll National Wildlife Sanctuary Keel scar caused by F/V Jin Shiang Fa to coralline algae reef, Rose Atoll National Wildlife Sanctuary Scarring of this humpback whale's fluke allow researchers to identify this particular whale from season to season, Megaptera novaeangliae, Santa Rosa Island, California Scarring of this humpback whale's fluke allow researchers to identify this particular whale from season to season, Megaptera novaeangliae, Santa Rosa Island, California Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males.  Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon An adult male elephant seal rests on a wet beach.  He displays the enormous proboscis characteristic of male elephant seals as well as considerable scarring on his neck from fighting with other males for territory.  Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Bull elephant seal, adult male, bellowing. Its huge proboscis is characteristic of male elephant seals. Scarring from combat with other males.  Central California, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females.  Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California Male elephant seals (bulls) rear up on their foreflippers and fight for territory and harems of females.  Bull elephant seals will haul out and fight from December through March, nearly fasting the entire time as they maintain their territory and harem.  They bite and tear at each other on the neck and shoulders, drawing blood and creating scars on the tough hides, Mirounga angustirostris, Piedras Blancas, San Simeon, California 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   more ...

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Updated: October 24, 2020