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Marine Animal Encyclopedia

California Sea Lion Zalophus californianus

Famed for its acrobatic antics in marine aquariums, the California sea lion is just as agile in the wild.

Its sleek body is covered with short fur, which ranges in color from brownish black in males to light brown in females and young; mature males may be more than three times as heavy as females and have a distinctive bony hump on their heads. California sea lions feed on fish and squid.

California Sea Lionzoom image
California Sea Lionzoom image
California Sea Lionzoom image
California Sea Lionzoom image
  • Order Carnivora
  • Length 6–8 ft (2–2.5 m)
  • Weight 240–880 lb (110–400 kg)
  • Habitat Rocky coasts and open sea
  • Distribution Pacific coast of the US, Galápagos Islands
California Sea Lion habitat mapzoom image