It was a real treat for me to witness this young Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus) slowly approach, rest on the sea floor and peer up at me in wonder. I must seem very strange and awkward to such a speedy underwater swimmer as this youngster.
These animals have been recorded diving to depths of 1148 feet (350 m) in search of food and remain submerged for around five minutes. The Steller sea lion is the world’s largest sea lion and males can reach lengths of almost 10 feet (3 m), and weigh 1760 pounds (800 kg). Their range extends from the California coast up to the Bearing Strait, and also includes the coastal areas of Japan and Asia.