Real Photo Post Card - "Alaska Fur-Seal Group (Callorhinus alascensis)"

By: California Academy of Sciences?

Price: $10.00

Quantity: 1 available

Book Condition: Collectible-Fine


Original black and white photo postcard. "1922" printed in the description on the back. 5 1/2" x 3 1/2." All text, including the title, printed on the back. Postcard is unused. Postcard is very clean and intact except for age toning on the back. A Fine copy. This postcard shows a group of northern fur seals (Callorhinus ursinus), formerly known as the Alaska fur seals (Callorhinus alascensis), on a rocky shore. A caption, "In the Museum of the California Academy of Sciences, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco," possibly refers to the location of the original image. There is also a description. Part of the description reads, "This shows the North Rookery on St. George Island, Bering Sea. One harem, consisting of one old bull, several cows and their pups, is in the foreground; many others are in the distance." The description proceeds to advocate for the hunting of these seals after the science of the time, 1922, argued that the 1912-1917 ban on hunting seals not only cost the United States economically but also harmed the seal population. However, later science would dispel this belief when the northern fur seal population declined over the years. The description refers to the ban of onshore seal hunting enacted between 1912 and 1917 which was added by the U.S. following the North Pacific Fur Seal Convention of 1911. The 1911 convention banned all commercial hunting of fur-bearing mammals at sea in the Pribilof Islands, including St. George Island, except for hunts by Indigenous Peoples. The 1912-1917 ban also halted all onshore hunting of fur seals. Despite the enactment of the 1911 treaty by the U.S., Canada, Great Britain, Japan, and Russia, the hunting of these seals resumed both on land and at sea for various reasons. Another fur seal ban was passed in 1957, but it was not until 1984 that all commercial fur seal hunting was banned in the Pribilof Islands after a significant public campaign and scientific evidence showed the seal population's decline. Today, the northern fur seal's conservation status is "Vulnerable."