Bearded Seal
Erignathus barbatus

f13 @ 1/5000s, ISO:800, Nikon D3S w 500mm

"Bearded Seal," Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Like many Arctic mammals, bearded seals employs a reproductive strategy known as delayed implantation. This means that the blastocyst is not implanted for two months after fertilization, most often becoming implanted in July. Thus, the seal's total gestation period is around eleven months, though its active gestation period is nine months. Natural predators of the bearded seal include polar bears, who rely on these seals as a major food source. Killer whales also prey on these seals, sometimes overturning ice floes to reach them. Walruses also eat these seals, mainly pups, but such predation is rare.
Svalbard, Norway