First records of hooded seals ( Cystophora cristata) in the Mediterranean Sea

Marine Biodiversity Records 01/2008; 1. DOI: 10.1017/S1755267207007804


Between the years 1996 and 2006 the Threatened Marine Species Recovery Centre (CREMA) detected 14 strandings and sightings of hooded seals in the coasts surrounding the Strait of Gibraltar. Five strandings and the only three sightings occurred on the Spanish coasts of the Mediterranean Sea. CREMA or its stranding report network did not deal directly with the stranded or sighted individuals but there were good descriptions and photographs to confirm identification. The frequency of stranding and sighting of hooded seal individuals on the southern coast of Spain indicate that the migratory movements of this species are performed by groups of young animals less than one year old.

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Available from: Juan Jesús Bellido Lopez,
    • "The presence of seals on the Spanish coasts is mainly restricted to the appearance of a few individuals of species whose main distribution areas are found in more northern waters, namely the grey seal (Halichoerus grypus) and the harbour seal (Phoca vitulina), ringed seal (Phoca hispida), walrus (Odobenus rosmarus ), bearded seal (Erignathus barbatus), Greenland seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus) and hooded seal (Cystophora cristata) (e.g. Delibes & Azcárate, 1984; Avellá et al., 1993; van Bree, 2000; López et al., 2002; Alonso et al., 2004; Bellido et al., 2007; Gonzalez-Melcon, 2008; Alonso-Farréet al., 2011; Gutiérrez-Expósito et al., 2012). There are also records of occasional occurrences on Mediterranean monk seals in Spanish waters (e.g. "
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