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  • 1. Harp Seal Inquiry Study By: Briana Price April 2010 How do seals catch How are seals adapted to their prey? Room 23 live in their environment? Year 7 Do harp seals have any predators, if so, what are they?
  • 2. Background Information Baby Harp Seal Scientific Name: Pagophilus Groenlandica or Phoca Groenlandica Harp Seals belong to the family of pinnipeds. Adults are identified by a harp shaped mark on their Adult Harp Seal backs. When born, pups are covered in a thick, white coat.
  • 3. Diagram of a Seal Source: http://www.animalcorner.co.uk/marine/seals/graphics/sealanat.jpg
  • 4. Adaptive Features – Physical Sharp claws – to defend against predators and to aid in the capture of food Closable ears – to keep out water and to help their bodies cope with underwater pressure at deeper levels Closable nostrils – to keep out water White colour of babies – help camouflage from predators
  • 5. Adaptive Features – Physical cont'd Hind flippers – act as oars propelling them quickly through the water Large eyes – have good ability to see underwater in dark conditions
  • 6. Adaptive Features - Physiological Sensitive whiskers – to detect the movement of their prey in dark or murky water Blubber – to provide body insulation to keep warm in cold water and ice, to provide energy when there is little food and to improve swimming ability Tears – the eye is constantly protected from salt by producing tears
  • 7. Adaptive Features - Behavioural The seals can put their flippers together to save body heat and newly weaned pups can use it as an energy source. The males use their sharp teeth to fight other males for territory and for mating rights. Their sharp teeth aid in the capture and consumption of food.
  • 8. Polar Bear Seal Mackerel Shrimp Zooplankton Phytoplankton Food Chain
  • 9. My Answers to my Questions How do seals catch their prey? They use their super sensitive whiskers to locate the prey, their claws and teeth to catch the prey, and their back teeth to grind shells or tough parts in food. Do seals have any predators, if so, what are they? Harp seals are hunted by killer whales (orcas), polar bears and humans. How are seals adapted to their environment? They have a large number of physical, physiological and behavioural adaptations as seen in previous
  • 10. Bibliography http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/mamm als/harp-seal.html www.animalcorner.co.uk www.enchantedlearning.com www.wikipedia.com Hodge, Judith, Seals, Sea Lions and Walruses, David Bateman (1999) Encyclopedia Britannica Junior – from Manukau Libraries e-resources