Elephant Seals Battle on Beach

Photo by“Mike” Michael L. Baird

Elephant seal fights can be brutal.


Recently two males were caught on camera in a brutal battle for dominance at Point Reyes, California on Jan. 26, 2020. Watch:

During breeding season, male elephant seals with fight eat other vigorously. These battles are rarely fatal, but they frequently draw blood and cause severe injuries. The loser must escape or face an even greater wrath from the victor.

Source: World’s Deadliest – Elephant Seal vs. Elephant Seal, NatGeoWild

If elephant seals battling and drawing a bit of blood here and there seems trivial, you should see what they can do to cars. Weighing over 8800 pounds (4000 kg), these are the largest of all seals and the largest of all Carnivorans. As such, they can deal some serious damage with minimal effort.

Source: Elephant Seal Smashes Into Cars, John Smith

Elephant seals are huge. Bull southern elephant seals typically weigh between 4,900 and 8,800 pounds (2,200 and 4,000 kilograms) and grow to lengths between 14 and 19 feet (4.2 and 5.8 meters). This makes the southern elephant seal both the largest pinniped and the largest living member of the order Carnivora. Not even bears exceed them in size and weight.

In fact, an adult male elephant seal weighs six to seven times more than polar bears and Kodiak bears, which are the largest terrestrial carnivores.

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