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The Seals of Macquarie Island

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Macquarie Island, an isolated outcrop of land in the Southern Ocean, midway between Australia and Antarctica, has been a wildlife sanctuary since 1933. Biologists of the Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition have an excellent opportunity to study the elephant seals which group into harems for the breeding season.

This film of their observations of the elephant seals' life while on the island includes a sequence showing how a beach master, presiding over one of the harems, fights off a rival bull that attempts to take over. It shows the biologists at work, weighing and branding pups.

The fur seal, which was virtually wiped out by sealers early in the nineteenth century, is shown to be returning to the island.

Produced in 1959.

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