Weddell seal lying on the ice

Weddell seal

Weddell seals were named after a British sea commander in the 1800s, Sir James Weddell who also has a sea in the Antarctic named after him. These seals live and swim in groups around cracks and breathing holes in the pack ice of the Antarctic, even chewing holes through particularly thin areas of ice with their canine teeth. Weddell seals can drink sea water and they also eat snow. They can remain underwater for up to an hour while hunting.

Scientific name: Leptonychotes weddellii

Rank: Species

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The Weddell seal can be found in a number of locations including: Antarctica. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


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


Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use 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

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