Weddell Seal, Lemaire Channel, Antarctica
Weddell seals spend much of their time below the Antarctic ice. They have the southernmost range of any seal, but find the chilly waters rich with the prey they seek. These seals do not migrate often and are commonly found within a few miles of their birthplace.
By swimming under the ice, these seals can often avoid their main predators�orcas and leopard seals. The environment helps their own fishing as well. When feeding below the ice, they may dive beneath their prey. As the seal rises, the fish above it are backlit by the ice above and easily spotted in silhouette. Weddell seals can also use air to collect a meal. They have been known to blow air into cracks in the ice. The surprise tactic puts small fish to flight, which the seal then devours. Cod and silverfish are favorites, though these seals also eat small crustaceans, octopuses, and other marine creatures.
Weddell seals can dive up to 2,000 feet (610 meters) down and stay unde...