Extralimital Distribution of Galapagos (Zalophus wollebaeki) and Northern (Eumetopias jubatus) Sea Lions in Mexico

Abstract: Global pinniped distribution is greatly determined by changes in sea surface temperature. El Niño events also have been reported to directly influence pinniped distribution. These events have increased in frequency and intensity changing the foraging ecology of the two pinniped species analyzed. In this paper, we present new extralimital records of distribution of two species rarely found in Mexican waters: the Galapagos (Zalophus wollebaeki) and the Northern (Eumetopias jubatus) sea lions. Three adult Z. wollebaeki were found in Chiapas, and one E. jubatus was recorded off the coasts of Colima—both exceeding the maximum reported extralimital distance. These new records increase the number of marine mammal species recorded in Mexico and add evidence to the fact that large-scale climatic variation and possible effects of global warming shift the distribution of marine mammals.

Key Words: Galapagos sea lion, Zalophus wollebaeki, Northern sea lion, Eumetopias jubatus, extralimital distribution, ENSO

Document Type: Research article

DOI: 10.1578/AM.36.2.2010.188

Page Numbers: 188-194

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