Mediterranean Monk Seal

Common Name: McCulloch's Anemonefish
Scientific Name: Amphiprion mccullochi


The Mediterranean monk seal is a phocid or "true" seal, and is the rarest and mainly endangered of all pinnipeds. These seals go to the same genus (Monachus) as the Hawaiian monk seals and Caribbean monk seals. All three of these monk seal species are considered to be either critically endangered (Hawaiian and Mediterranean) or extinct (Caribbean).


Mediterranean monk seals have a quite large, long, robust body, and can grow up to about 7-9 ft (2.2-2.8 m) in length and weigh 530-880 lbs (240-400 kg).


Mediterranean monk seals can be found in warm temperate, subtropical and tropical waters of the Mediterranean Sea and the east Atlantic Ocean. They are considered shy of people and prefer lonely haul-out sites and sea caves or grottos where females provide birth and nurse their young.


Mediterranean monk seals have an endemic widespread variety throughout the Mediterranean Sea (Aegean, Black and Ionian Seas, as well as the Sea of Marmara), and the east Atlantic Ocean along the coast of Northwest Africa.

Population Trends

There are about 600 Mediterranean monk seals currently residual and the species is considered to be at great risk of extinction. There are two part and distinct


1. a northeastern Mediterranean group that inhabits the Aegean and Ionian Seas approximately Greece and Turkey, and

2. a northeastern Atlantic group that inhabits the island of Madeira and the coast of Mauritania/Western Sahara in North Africa.