GALÁPAGOS SEA LION
ASIA DIVE EXPO (ADEX 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019 SPEAKER)
The location that inspired Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, the Galápagos archipelago is home to many intriguing endemic species, including the Galápagos sea lion. Although they might appear lethargic on land, these small sea lions transform into energetic wonders underwater – and seem to love nothing more than playfully interacting with divers.
Sadly, repeated El Niño events in recent years have had severe repercussions for the marine life on which the Galápagos sea lion depends, and strong events have seen the cessation of reproduction and mass die-offs. Plastic pollution has become a problem, with sea lions frequently becoming in entangled in drifting plastic waste, while boat collisions and oil spills also pose serious threats. Pinnipeds are highly susceptible to viral infection, and the increasing contact between sea lions and domestic dogs in some places is increasing the risk of disease transmission.