Among the eight species of fur seal distributed over the earth, just one is common in the northern hemisphere. All of the remaining seven species of fur seals inhabit the waters of the southern hemisphere. They spend most of their time swimming in search of food in oceans.
Fur seals court comparison with sea lions. They have an external ear. Fur seals are equipped with some long flippers in the frontal parts of their bodies, which are also quite muscular. This makes the fur seals able to walk on all four legs or flippers on reaching the shores. Male fur seals are known to be a lot heavier than females.
The underfur of fur seals is quite thick and competent when it comes to trapping the warmth of the body. But the underfur has been the very bone of contention when it comes to their being hunted. Fur seals have been vehemently and ruthlessly hunted down for their furs. They have been the subject and object of commercial hunters all over the world. Indiscriminate hunting of fur seals has brought down their numbers significantly, and they stand at the edge of extinction.
The summer season is considered the ideal for breeding when fur seals turn to beaches to mingle with each other. In the oceans, they are known to eat fish. They hunt for squids and eels to eat. They also eat planktons.
Predators of fur seals include large aquatic animals like killer whales and sharks. Sea lions and leopard seals also occasionally devour fur seals.