Remarkably, the Juan Fernández fur seal was considered extinct until it was happily rediscovered in 1965, although it nevertheless remains rare (2). Like most fur seals, this species has an elongated, slender body and a long, pointed snout and flippers (2) (4). Adult males have a particularly long muzzle that may be slightly down-curved at the tip, and which ends in a large, bulbous, fleshy nose, creating a shark-like silhouette (2). Adult males also develop thicker and more muscular necks, surrounded by a mane of long, coarse, dark hair with silver tips, giving the mane a frosted appearance (2). The necks and fore-flippers of the males are usually scarred from fighting (5). The back and belly are dark, blackish-brown in males, while the crown down to the ears and nape to the shoulders sometimes appear silvery-grey, against a darker throat and neck. Adult females are grey-brown to dark brown above, and variably paler below, especially on the chest and underside of the neck, which can be creamy grey, and there may be areas of lighter colour on the face. Both sexes have whitish-cream whiskers (2).
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