Otariidae (family)

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Scope note
Family containing 14 species in seven genera comprising sea lions and fur seals. They are adapted to a semi-aquatic lifestyle, feeding and migrating in the water but breeding and resting on land or ice, having small but visible external ear flaps, larger foreflippers and pectoral muscles than true seals, and the ability to turn their hind limbs forward and walk on all fours. With true seals and walruses, arose in the late Miocene (10-12 million years ago), descended from a common ancestor most closely related to modern bears.
Accepted term: 20-May-2024