Spotted Seal

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Scientific Information

The Spotted Seal (Phoca largha), also known as the Larga Seal, inhabits the ice and waters of the north Pacific Ocean and adjacent seas. It is primarily found along the continental shelf of the Beaufort, Chukchi, Bering and Okhotsk Seas and south to the northern Yellow Sea and western Sea of Japan.

Historically, spotted and harbor seals were considered to be closely related subspecies, both being referred to on occasion as harbor or common seals. Anatomical differences between the two seals and the variability in biological events, such as pupping and molting, have led to classification as separate species. The spotted seal is strongly associated with sea ice from autumn to late spring-early summer and bears its young on the drifting pack ice. Most harbor seals inhabit ice-free waters year round.

Community Information

Brevig Mission


Spoken Name

Relevant Site Information

Spotted Seals are hunted for their meat, blubber, and their beautiful fur.

We can cook half dried seal meat or we can eat it dried. Our mothers always do the seal cutting and putting away the meat and seal oil. We can eat the meat, the heart, intestines, kidneys, the liver, blubber, and aged flipper. The skin can be used for sewing, making mukluks, Eskimo clothing, warm hats, and mittens. Most ladies use the skin to sew hair pretties.

Seals live in the ocean even it there is ice in the ocean. They got to live in the cold water or else they will die. In winter they always make a little hole so they can get a breathe of air. They live on fish and plants under water. The fish can be small or big when they eat. When the ice is melting and there is open water you can see them on the ice, most of the men go and hunt for them when the ice is melting and there is open water, they do not only hunt for spotted seals they hunt for others seals.




Spoken Name

Relevant Site Information

Shishmaref is well known for the use of the Spotted Seals' pelts as ladies use it for skin sewing. Products such as slippers, mittens, fur hats, mukluqs, Christ-signs (ornaments), etc. are made using the pelt. Hunters will hunt the spotted seal in the fall time, not in the spring as the seals are molting during the spring.


Burns, John. "Spotted Sea." Internet. 2007.

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