The Walrus

The Walrus - 2


The walrus is a large marine mammal that can be found in the Arctic Ocean and in the northern hemisphere.

It is the only species in the Odobenidae family and the Odobenus genus. There are three species of walrus: Atlantic (found in the Atlantic Ocean), Pacific (found in the Pacific Ocean) and Rosmarus Laptev (found in the Laptev Sea). Walrus played an important role during indigenous peoples.

It was bruised for meat, fat, skin, tongue and bones. In the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, the walrus was the object of commercial exploits for fat and ivory so intensely that their number decreased very quickly and very much.

Their world population has returned, but the historic massacre remains.

The name of the animal has varied over time with different combinations of: whale, horse, shoal and giant. Eventually a common name came, meaning “Horse whale”. The Latin word coincidence of the word (morrow means death) gave it a killing creature.

Analyzes indicate that the mars have ancestors that lived 15-20 million years ago.

Walrus’s Food

Walrus prefers feed from the bottom of the sea around the ice platforms.

It does not descend to deep depths, not more than 80m. I can stay underwater for half an hour. Walrus has a diverse diet, feeding on more than 60 species of marine organisms including shrimp, crab, worm, soft coral, sea cucumber, various mollusks, etc.

They prefer mollusks and especially shells. Sensitive worms help identify the leeks. Besides the large number of organisms used by the marrow, it helps, when looking for nutrition on the bottom of the sea, to release the nutrients in the water column.

Walrus’s Aspect

Pacific males weigh about 2000kg, while the rest are weighing between 800 and 1800kg. Females weigh two thirds of the male weight.

The shape of the body is similar to that of sea lions. Mouths though have lower back limbs as one can walk in four paws. They have no external ears.

The most prominent feature of the walrus is the long corners. These are elongated canines present in both genders and can reach a length of one meter.

Colts weigh over 5kg. In males the thighs are somewhat longer and thicker. Usually males with the strongest fingers dominate the groups.

Collars are also used as a third hand when they come out of the water on the ice. It was initially thought that the walrus are using their fingers to remove the pin from the bottom of the sea, but it seems they are used for digging.

Walrus have a maximum number of teeth of 38. Generally they have 50 of them. Around the corners, the walrus has characteristic mustaches. There are 13-15 rows of mustaches of length up to 30 cm long. Outside the mustache, there are not many hair on his body so you can not talk about fur.

The skin has a thickness of 9-10 cm around the neck and shoulders. The undercoat has a thickness of 15cm. The color of the young is brown, but with the time of aging it opens to become light brown.

Older mores are opening so much that they tend to become pink. The walrus has an air bag under the throat. Males have a bone penis that can reach 63cm in length, overtaking any terrestrial animal.

Walrus’s Behavior

Beginning with the end of the summer the walrus gather to form massive agglomerations of tens of thousands of individuals on beaches or rocks. Migration takes long distances and sometimes it can end dramatically.

Several hundreds of thousands of Pacific moors migrate from the Bering Sea to the Chucki Sea through Bering Strait. At the 1990 census there were about 200,000 Pacific walrus.

Atlantic walrus almost disappeared from the face of the earth. It is difficult to get an estimate, but it is believed that their population is under 20,000 copies.

Due to the large size of the walrus, there are only two natural predators: the orca and the polar bear. However, the polar bear hunts rather injured individuals, or young walrus. A wounded adult is an enemy of the polar bear. Direct attacks are rare.

Walrus plays an important role in the religion and folklore of the Arctic peoples. The skin and bones are used in ceremonies. Animals often appear in legends. In one of them a marsh recovers the sun and moon from a bad spirit, succeeding to seduce her face.

The nervous father throws the face from a high rock and at the touch of the first drops of water turns into a dwarf.

Walrus’s Reproduction

Walrus lives about 20-30 years in the wild. Males reach sexual maturity at age 7, but do not mate until age 15.

Females “open” the mating season at the end of summer and “close” it in February. Males are fertile only in February. It is true that mating takes place from January to March.

Males are approaching groups in heat and mating takes place in the water. The gestation period lasts 15-16 months. Cubs are born during the early morning migration, generally from April to June. At birth they weigh 45-75kg.

They are able to swim after birth.

The Walrus - 1