Straggler subantarctic fur seal (Arctocephalus tropicalis) on the coast of Rio de Janeiro State, Brazil

J. F. Moura, S. Siciliano

Abstract


Eighteen specimens of subantarctic fur seals (Arctocephalus tropicalis) were recorded along the coast of Rio de Janeiro state in the period 1994-2006. Of these, 55.5% (n=10) were males, 11.1% (n=2) were females, and 33.3% (n=6) were of undetermined sex. Most of the records occurred during the austral winter (n=15; 83.3%), with a peak in August, followed by 11.1% and 5.5% during spring and autumn, respectively. There was no record during summer. All males found and measured were subadults and the two recorded females were one adult and one juvenile. In 2002 six specimens were recorded, accounting for 33.3% of the total records followed by 2000 (n=4; 22.2 %). The records presented here suggest that the population increase in many breeding sites of A. tropicalis could result in new extra limital records. Furthermore, a complex marine current system appears to have an important role on the dispersal of the subantarctic fur seals found along the Atlantic South American coast. In addition, the contact of humans with these pinnipeds could increase the risk of disease transmission.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5597/lajam00114

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