Harp Walrus

Harp tapes live throughout the cold waters of the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans. These tapes are actually named after the black spot on their back, which seems like a harp.

Harp tapes collect in huge teams of as much as several thousand to molt and reproduce. Although they live in cold water, harp seal puppies are birthed without any preventive fat. Newborns rapidly build a strong layer of blubber while nursing.

Harp seals, like all aquatic animals, are guarded under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. NOAA Fisheries is devoted to conserving and securing harp seals. Our partners and researchers utilize a wide array of impressive methods to research, learn more about, and also safeguard this types.


To take care of harp tapes in U.S. waters, our team have organized all of them in to western side North Atlantic inventory. Based upon the best current questionnaire, our experts estimate that there have to do with 7 million tapes in this stock.

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Protected Condition

Harp tapes are part of truth tape family. All correct tapes have quick flippers, which they use to relocate a caterpillar-like activity ashore. They carry out certainly not possess exterior ear flaps.

Harp tapes concern 5 to 6 feet long, weigh concerning 260 to 300 extra pounds, as well as have a durable physical body with a small, level scalp. They have a narrow snout as well as 8 pairs of pearly whites in both the uppermost and reduced jaws. Their front flippers possess heavy, strong claws, while their rear flippers possess smaller sized, narrower paws.

Grown-up harp tapes possess mild gray fur with a black face mask on their skin and a bent dark patch on their spine. This dark spot appears like a harp and is actually the resource of the types’ popular label.

Harp seal dogs possess long, wooly, white colored fur referred to as lanugo that lasts up until concerning 3 to 4 weeks old. This white hair helps soak up sun light as well as trap warmth to always keep the doggies hot. Puppies molt numerous times throughout their advancement.

Behavior as well as Diet regimen

Harp seals gather on bay ice in huge groups during the course of breeding as well as molting periods. These groups may have around several 1000 seals. Harp seals likewise nourish and journey in big groups during in season transfers. They frequently travel away from the pack ice throughout the summer as well as follow the ice north to nourish in the Arctic. Yearly migrations may be more than 3,100 miles roundtrip.

Harp seals can plunge up to 1,300 feets listed below the surface area as well as stay underwater for about 16 mins. Some seals have been actually discovered with more than 65 types of fish as well as 70 types of invertebrates in their stomachs.

Life expectancy & Duplication

The optimum life expectancy of a harp tape is around three decades. Ladies give birth coming from overdue February by means of mid-March. They will merely deliver throughout the brief period of time when pack ice is actually accessible, as the ice delivers a location to registered nurse their doggies.

At birth, newborn harp tapes analyze concerning 25 extra pounds and are about 3 feets long. Harp tapes wean when they hit around 80 pounds.

After weaning, grown-up women leave their dogs on the pack ice. The pups stay on the ice without eating for about 6 weeks. They may lose approximately half of their body weight before they get in the water and also begin devouring their own.


Commercial hunters have actually grabbed harp tapes in Canada for meat product and also oil considering that the 1600s. The Canada Department of Fisheries and Oceans establishes an annual complete allowable catch for business, indigenous, and also individual use searching.

Boat Attacks

Unintended craft strikes may get rid of or even injure or hurt harp tapes. Harp seals are actually prone to vessel collisions throughout their array, but the danger is a lot greater in some seaside locations with hefty ship visitor traffic.


Harp tapes may become knotted in angling equipment as well as other sorts of aquatic particles, either swimming off with the equipment associated or even becoming secured. They can easily come to be entangled in various equipment styles, consisting of gillnets, trawls, purse seines, or even weirs. Once knotted, seals may drown if they can easily certainly not reach the surface area to take a breath, or even they may drag and also go for a swim along with affixed equipment for long distances, inevitably leading to fatigue, weakened feeding capacity, or even severe trauma, which may lead to reduced reproductive results as well as death (down population).

Chemical Contaminants

Impurities go into ocean waters coming from many sources, including oil and gasoline development, wastewater outpourings, city drainage, and various other industrial methods. When in the setting, these drugs go up the food cycle and gather in killers near the best, like harp seals. Because of their blubber outlets, harp tapes collect these impurities in their bodies, threatening their procreative and immune bodies.

Oil Spills Over and also Power Expedition

Offshore oil as well as gasoline expedition as well as development also possess the prospective to effect harp tapes. If subjected to oil, a harp seal’s hair can absolutely no a lot longer drive away water. Breathing in or eating oil can easily harm a tape’s breathing, intestinal, procreative, and also core worried units.

 Weather Change

Harp seals count on the schedule of appropriate ocean ice as a haul-out system for delivering, nursing puppies, and also molting. Thus, harp seals are sensitive to adjustments in the environment that impact the time and also magnitude of ocean ice development and also split up.

Scientific Classification

  • KingdomAnimalia
  • PhylumChordata
  • ClassMammalia
  • OrderCarnivora
  • FamilyPhocidae
  • GenusPagophilus
  • Speciesgroenlandicus

They reside in cool water, harp tape pups are actually born without any type of safety fat. Harp tapes are part of the real seal family. Harp seals gather on pack ice in big teams during breeding as well as molting seasons. Offshore oil and gas exploration and growth additionally have the possibility to affect harp tapes. If exposed to oil, a harp tape’s hair can easily absolutely no longer push backwater.


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