Northern elephant seals are found in the coastal waters of the Pacific Ocean from the Gulf of Alaska down to Baja California. Foraging migrations by males and females are made seperately, two times yearly. Males journey north to the Aleutian Islands and the Gulf of Alaska. Females don't travel as far north, but instead migrate further west to more open ocean. The total linear distances migrated by these animals each year has been recorded at 21,000 km. Seals can be seen on shore most often from December through March, during the mating season and again beginning in April and continuing through August as they haul out for moulting. (Feldhamer et al., 1999; Le Boeuf et al., 2000; McConnaughey and McConnaughey, 1997; Reeves, Stewart, and Leatherwood, 1992)
Biogeographic Regions: Nearctic; Nearctic :: Native; Oceanic Islands; Oceanic Islands :: Native; Pacific Ocean; Pacific Ocean :: Native
- Feldhamer, G., L. Drickamer, S. Vessey, J. Merritt. 1999. Mammalogy: Adaptation, Diversity, and Ecology. Boston: McGraw Hill.
- Le Boeuf, B., D. Crocker, D. Costa, S. Blackwell, P. Webb. 2000. Foraging ecology of northern elephant seals. Ecological Monographs, 70 (3): 353-382.
- McConnaughey, B., E. McConnaughey. 1997. Pacific Coast. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc..
- Reeves, R., B. Stewart, S. Leatherwood. 1992. The Sierra Club Handbook of Seals and Sirenians. San Francisco: Sierra Club Books.