Phocarctos – New Zeal’ sea lion

One of the largest mammals found in New Zealand and the rarest sea lion species in the world

New Zealand sea lion males are blackish-brown with a well-defined mane around their shoulders, whereas females are light grey with darker shades around the flippers. Pups have dark brown natal pelage and become dark grey with cream markings on top of their head. Their head is short and blunt compared to other species of sea lions.

These sea lions are considered the most threatened sea lion in the world, and their population is mainly driven by the breeding population in the Auckland Islands. They suffer from threats such as commercial fishery bycatch, food limitation, disease, subsistence hunting, and commercial sealing