Northern Elephant Seal

Northern Elephant Seal

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Credit: CRAIG K. LORENZ/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Northern Elephant Seals (Mirounga angustirostris) are thick-bodied seals with short front flippers and protruding nails. Their hind flippers cannot rotate forward, so, when they are on land, they must drag their hind limbs as they lumber across rocks or beaches. The hind flippers are fully webbed and function as excellent flippers when these seals are in the water. They are extraordinary swimmers, using primarily their hind flipper for propulsion and their front flippers as rudders. San Simeon, Ca.

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Keywords: animal, close up, close-up, closeup, elephant seal, fauna, flipper, flippers, hind, mammal, marine, mirounga, mirounga angustirostris, nature, northern elephant seal, pinniped, seal, wildlife

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