Southern Elephant Seals of Maritime Antarctica
Gil-Delgado, J.A., Villasescusa, J.A., Diazmacip, M.E., Velazquez, D., Rico, E., Toro, M., Quesada, A. and Camacho, A. 2013. Minimum population size estimates demonstrate an increase in southern elephant seals (Mirounga leonina) on Livingston Island, maritime Antarctica. Polar Biology 36: 607-610.
The eight Spanish researchers report that the final numbers they derived represent an increase of 150% since the sub-population they studied was first counted some 30 years ago. Such "finding of an increased subpopulation on Byers Peninsula," according to Gil-Delgado et al. suggests that "the entire South Georgia stock may also be increasing instead of being stable as currently assumed." In addition, they note that "the occurrence of southern elephant seals breeding in recent times and in areas located at higher latitudes, such as Anvers island (ASPA 113, 2009), suggests that the breeding range of this species is expanding." And, therefore, they conclude that "habitat availability for southern elephant seals in Antarctica could increase as a result of climate change, thus providing additional suitable breeding habitats," as suggested at the turn of the century by the observations of McMahon and Campbell (2000).
Aguayo, A. and Torres, D. 1967. Observaciones sobre mamiferos marinos durante la vigesima commission Antarctica chilena, primer censo de pinipedios en las Islas Shetland del Sur. Rev. Biol. Mar. 13: 1-57.
ASPA 113. 2009. Management Plan for Antarctic Specially Protected Area No. 113, Litchfield Island, Arthur Harbor, Anvers Island, Palmer Archipelago.
Laws, R. 1994. History and present status of southern elephant seal populations. In: Leboeuf, B. and Laws, R. (Eds.). Elephant Seals: Population, Ecology, Behavior and Physiology. University of California Press, Berkley, California, USA, pp. 49-65.
Lewis, M. 1996. El elefante marino del sur, biologia de la especie, descripcion general de la agrupacion de la Peninsula Valdes y protocolos de trabajo. Informe Tecnico 16: 1-29., Plan de Manejo Integrado de la Zona Costera patagonica (Puerto Madryn, Argentina).
McMahon, C.R. and Campbell, D. 2000. Southern elephant seals breeding at Peterson Island, Antarctica. Polar Record 36: 51.