Portrait of a ringed seal

Ringed seal

Ringed seals are the smallest and most common earless seals living in the Arctic. They are specially adapted to live and breed in the Arctic ice, building ice caves above their breathing holes to protect their pups from predators such as polar bears. They excavate these lairs by scraping at the ice with their front flippers. There are several subspecies of the ringed seal, two of which live in freshwater lakes in Finland and Russia.

Scientific name: Pusa hispida

Rank: Species

Common names:

Jar seal


The Ringed seal can be found in a number of locations including: Arctic, North America, Russia. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the Ringed seal distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

Conservation Status

Least Concern

  1. EX - Extinct
  2. EW
  3. CR - Threatened
  4. EN - Threatened
  5. VU - Threatened
  6. NT
  7. LC - Least concern

Population trend: Unknown

Year assessed: 2008

Classified by: IUCN 3.1