Harp Seal: Lazy (Albeit Cute)?

I know what you’re thinking; are harp seals really that lazy? Well alright, you’re probably just thinking that this Parry Gripp song is pretty catchy, but I want to take a few minutes to write about the life history and behavior of this little dude.

Harp seals are named as such because their dorsal fin is shaped like the musical instrument, and while it might not be as majestic-sounding as a harp, young pups can make their own music. Observe:

You can find harp seals in the Arctic and north Atlantic oceans eating different kinds of fish, including but not limited to cod, herring and Greenland halibut. Common predators they have to watch out for are polar bears, sharks and killer whales.

Harp seals also do happen to have a cool yellow jacket…for a little while anyway! Their fur is actually yellow when pups are born, so they get the nickname “yellowcoats” for the first few days of their lives. They’ll then move onto a white coat, from there a silver-tinted coat, and a “ragged-jacket” look when molting in between phases. After the white fur is completely gone, they enter the “beater” phase, and by 15 months old the seals have some solid spots that qualify them as “bedlamers.” They’ll stay like that until they reach sexual maturity, where they’ll take on the long-term harp seal coat. Good to know that harp seals have more fashionable outerwear than some of us humans, eh?

The harp seal might not have a cool camera, but when everyone else is clamoring to take pictures of you, who needs one–right? As far as them being lazy goes, the world may never know; but in the spirit of laziness, here’s a picture of a harp seal casually napping so you can think about that question while you go back to laboring at work, class, etc…and generally not being a cute harp seal.

 

6 comments
Stuart Walker
Stuart Walker

Love and respect is law in a civilized people... lets be this, fellow humans, for us ALL and the future of Earth! I Love You and Yours, every breath I take.

Cassidy Joelle
Cassidy Joelle

btw, i think the article is kind of anthropomorphizing these creatures; doesn't work for me. Lazy? Try living where they do w tiny legs and a big body.

Cassidy Joelle
Cassidy Joelle

i couldn't kill anyone myself; i just hope they get it all the same

Cassidy Joelle
Cassidy Joelle

i sincerely wish death upon anyone who kills even ONE of these angels. they do not deserve to live; you gotta have NO soul to do that. I vote all the 'no-souls' shipped into Space (catapulted)

David W Peterson
David W Peterson

It would be nice if this article mentioned how many of them are still slaughtered every year.