Arctocephalus

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Arctocephalus
Seal 0906.jpg
New Zealand Fur Seal
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Suborder: Pinnipedia
Family: Otariidae
Subfamily: Arctocephalinae
Genus: Arctocephalus
É. Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire & F. Cuvier in F. Cuvier, 1826
Type species
Phoca pusilla
Schreber, 1775
Species

Arctocephalus gazella
Arctocephalus townsendi
Arctocephalus philippii
Arctocephalus galapagoensis
Arctocephalus pusillus
Arctocephalus forsteri
Arctocephalus tropicalis
Arctocephalus australis

Arctocephalus.png

The genus Arctocephalus consists of eight of the nine species of fur seal. For details see the fur seal article, or the individual species articles.

Taxonomy[edit]

The number of species within the genus has been questioned, primarily based on limited molecular data. The issue is complicated by the fact some of the species are able to produce fertile hybrids. A recent review recommended the retention of seven species, deprecating the New Zealand fur seals to a subspecies of the South American fur seal, while also questioning the status of the Guadelupe fur seal.[1] Other recent studies have indicated that the genus may be paraphyletic.[2] In that case, all species (except for the Cape fur seal) will have to be split off into a separate genus,[1] for which the name Arctophoca has been suggested.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Berta, A. & Churchill, M. (2012). "Pinniped Taxonomy: evidence for species and subspecies". Mammal Review 42 (3): 207–234. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2907.2011.00193.x. 
  2. ^ Yonezawa, T., et al. (2009). "The monophyletic origin of sea lions and fur seals (Carnivora; Otariidae) in the Southern Hemisphere". Gene 441 (1-2): 89–99. doi:10.1016/j.gene.2009.01.022. PMID 19254754.