Photo: Sea Lions
Two sea lions, observed last week in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Costa Rica, surprised tourists and experts for being a species rarely seen in Central America.
“They’re always in areas near the coast and live in colder waters than the waters in the tropics, so it’s unusual to see them here - they’re normally found in South America or very far to the north,” biologist and zoologist Bernal Rodriguez told Efe.
The sightings were made on the beaches of Punta de Banco in Pavones de Golfito, and on those of San Pedrillo in Corcovado National Park in Puntarenas province, tourists and forest rangers told the press.
In the past some sea lions have been spotted along the area’s coastline, though Rodriguez insisted that since it is not a species that inhabits the area, it is still very strange to see them here.
A sea lion weighs between 275 and 450 kilograms (between 600 and 990 pounds), and can dive to a depth of some 186 meters (610 feet) and stay underwater for up to 40 minutes.
The animals swim up to 40 kph (25 mph), though some people consider them lazy creatures because they like to relax and bask in the sun.
Six kinds of sea lion are still found in the waters of the world: the California, Steller, Australian, Galapagos, New Zealand and South American species.