Latest Walrus Stories
The discovery of the oldest known fur seal, a tiny creature slightly larger than a sea otter, has helped close a five million year old gap in the evolutionary history of these semi-aquatic marine mammals, according to research published in the latest edition of Biology Letters.
A dense mass of Pacific walruses, estimated to be 35,000 strong, has gathered on a beach in northwest Alaska, approximately five miles north of Point Lay. Scientists believe this unprecedented number of animals has been driven to shore by a lack of sea ice.
Pinning down the answer to a widely-asked question is one of the most exciting things a researcher can do. For Thomas Cullen, who completed the research as part of his Master's degree at Carleton University, this experience came early in his career.
Because sea ice is at its lowest point in 1,500 years, scientists are questioning how ecological communities in the Arctic will be affected by this continued and perhaps accelerating melting process over the next two decades.
The fast-melting Arctic sea ice seems to be pushing the walruses out onto land, with many moving near the area where oil leases have been sold.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service said Tuesday that the Pacific walrus needs additional protection from the threat of climate warming but cannot be added to the threatened or endangered list because other species have higher priority.
Melting sea ice in the southern Arctic Ocean has caused tens of thousands of walruses to come ashore in northwest Alaska.
Walruses are large semi-aquatic mammals that live in the cold Arctic seas of the Northern Hemisphere. There are 6 populations in the arctic and 2 or 3 subspecies exist. The Pacific walrus is slightly larger, with males weighing up to 4,180 lb (1,900 kg), but Atlantic males top out at 3,500 lb (1,600 kg). The walrus should not be confused with the elephant seal. Walruses are members of the order Carnivora and suborder (or alternatively super family) Pinnipedia. They are the only members in...
The Polar Bear (Ursus maritimus) is a large mammal of the order Carnivora, family Ursidae (bears). It is a circumpolar species found in and around the Arctic Ocean and is the world's largest land carnivore. Adult males weigh from 400 to 600 kg and occasionally exceed 800 kg. Females are about half the size of males and normally weigh 200-300 kg. Adult males measure 2.4 to 2.6 m; females, 1.9 to 2.1 m. At birth, cubs weigh 600 to 700 g. Population estimates range from 16,000 to 35,000, with...