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Difference Between Seals and Sea Lions

seal_sea-lionSeals vs Sea Lions

Seals and sea lions are actually called fin-footed animals or pinnipedia. They are warm-blooded marine mammals that could live both in water and on land. The seals are classified as earless pennipeds while the sea lions are classified as eared pennipeds. Seals were tagged as earless since they do not have ear flaps. They only have pinnae or the tiny holes which are used for hearing. Sea lions on the other hand, have visible ear flaps.

Sea lions have longer front flippers while seals have shorter front flippers but have long claws. Sea lions flippers do not have hair but seals have furs on their flippers. The fur actually reaches the body of the seals that is why sea lions appear sleeker than seals. The hind flippers of the sea lions are actually flexible which make it possible for them to move the hind flippers in any direction. This conveniently allows them to walk on land. The hind flippers of seals on the other hand, could not be rotated. That is the reason why seals need to wiggle their belly when they move on land.

Though sea lions have the advantage when in land due to the flexible hind flippers, seals on the other hand have the advantage when in water. They can move swiftly in water for about 14 to 24 miles per hour since the front flippers can be used for steering while the hind flipper is used to propel in water.

Sea lions are more social mammals than seals. They could actually create unique loud noises while seals could only grunt quietly. They are also skillful as compared with seals and it is for this reason that sea lions hold the limelight in most movies as well as ocean shows.

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