Southern elephant seals feed exclusively when they are at sea. For this reason not much is known about what they eat. The main known sources of food are squid, crabs, shrimp, fish, and sharks. This prey is obtained both near the surface and also during very deep dives. They have been known to eat bottom dwelling fish. ("Elephant Seal", 2002; "Elephant Seals", 1983; "Southern Elephant Seal", 2003; Anderson, 2003; Crown, 1997; Nichols et al., 2003; Seal Conservation Society, 2001; Slip and Clippingdale, 2002; Slip, 1995)
Animal Foods: Fish; Mollusks; Aquatic Crustaceans
- Bradshaw, C., M. Hindell, N. Best, K. Phillips, G. Wilson, P. Nichols. 2003. You are what you eat: Describing the foraging ecology of southern elephant seals using blubber fatty acids. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, 270: 1283-1292.