walruses

14 Stories

Walrus 'Hug' Kills 2 at Wildlife Park

Tourist fell from open walkway: reports

(Newser) - A tourist and trainer have died after a walrus "hug" at a wildlife park in China. A male tourist from northern China was reportedly taking videos of a walrus from a narrow walkway at Xixiajou Wildlife Park in Shandong Province when he accidentally fell in the walrus pool. A... More »

25 Walruses Found Dead on Beach

Some were missing heads and tusks in Alaska

(Newser) - The US Fish and Wildlife Service is investigating the deaths of 25 Pacific walruses found on an isolated northwest Alaska beach. A person connected to an Air Force radar station in the remote area spotted the animals and notified the agency this week. The animals included 12 pups, and some... More »

Greenland's Vikings Weren't Farmers, They Were Walrus Hunters

They apparently had a lucrative ivory trade going on: researchers

(Newser) - For a long time, scientists wondered why Vikings settled in Greenland as farmers, since livestock doesn't thrive there and the growing season is truncated, notes Hakai Magazine . But while speculation as to why they eventually abandoned the island territory range from climate change to soil erosion , researchers now think... More »

Planes Rerouted to Prevent Walrus Stampede

FAA warns media, gawkers to stay away, not spook beached animals

(Newser) - Aircraft, media, and curious folks in general have been instructed to stay far away from the 35,000 walruses crammed onto an Alaskan beach to prevent the easily spooked animals from stampeding each other to death, the Guardian reports. "When they lose their sea ice habitat and come ashore... More »

Why 35K Walruses Crowded Onto This Beach

There's no ice in the Chukchi Sea for them to rest on

(Newser) - What a loss of sea ice looks like: an estimated 35,000 walruses, crowded on one stretch of Alaskan beach. Images taken on Saturday via plane as part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's annual marine animal survey capture just that. The enormous grouping of the mammals near... More »

10K Walruses Huddle as Sea Ice Melts

Arctic warming has taken away their natural home

(Newser) - A sad sight in the Arctic: About 10,000 Pacific walruses have gathered on a remote island because their sea ice is melting away, National Geographic reports. Typically the giant mammals enjoy "hauling out" to rest or warm their bodies on floating ice, but Arctic warming has been eroding... More »

Moms Attack Skittles for 'Bestiality' Ad

That walrus is no boyfriend, squawks One Million Moms

(Newser) - The morality brigade of One Million Moms has its tusks in a twist over a new Skittles ad. Now they're claiming the colorful candy company is promoting ... bestiality, reports Gawker . Maybe that's because a new ad features a young woman apparently kissing a walrus. "What are you... More »

Mystery Disease Killing Alaskan Seals

Ringed seal outbreak puzzles biologists

(Newser) - A mysterious disease is killing seals along Alaska's Arctic coast, and officials fear it might spread to other countries—and other species. Scores of dead or severely weakened ringed seals with telltale skin lesions and hair loss have been found along the coastline over the last few months, Reuters... More »

Alaskans Plead Guilty to Trafficking in Walrus Ivory

They traded with native Eskimos, say authorities

(Newser) - Huge quantities of walrus tusks and a pair of polar bear hides were among the illegal goods sold by two Alaskans who have pleaded guilty to violating federal marine mammal laws. A third person is expected to plead guilty next week. Authorities say two of the three spent years traveling... More »

Walruses Short-Changed on Fed Protection

Endangered tuskers 'low on the totem pole'

(Newser) - The Interior Department has decided that walruses are endangered enough to warrant protection—but it's not going to give it to them. The threat to the Pacific walrus from global warming reducing Arctic sea ice is very real, officials say, but limited government resources mean protection will have to wait... More »

Melting Ice Forces Thousands of Walruses Ashore

Calves at risk of being trampled as animals squeeze onto Alaska coast

(Newser) - Tens of thousands of walruses have squeezed onto small patches of Alaska's shore because of melting ice floes. Scientists say the loss of sea ice has forced the lumbering creatures into a mass migration to land. The huge number of walruses foraging in a small area makes cubs extremely vulnerable... More »

Fossil of 'Missing Link' Walking Seal Found

Arctic creature's existence was predicted by Charles Darwin

(Newser) - The fossil of a semi-aquatic creature unearthed in northern Canada may hold the key to how seals and walruses evolved, the BBC reports. The carnivore—which resembles a cross between an otter and a seal—had feet that were webbed but weren't flippers. Scientists believe the animals walked on land... More »

Warmest Year Ever Threatens Arctic Wildlife

Greenland ice shelf loses 24 cubic miles to melting

(Newser) - The Arctic had its warmest year on record in 2007, and a new government report underscores the unsettling consequences for ice sheets and wildlife, ABC News reports. The report reiterates many of the familiar scenarios of late about the region—sea ice is vanishing at a record pace and permafrost... More »

US Drilling Deals Spark New Fears for Polar Bears

Oils companies to explore frozen seas

(Newser) - The US government has announced $2.7 billion in winning bids for oil drilling rights in 2.8 million acres of Alaska's frozen Chukchi Sea, despite angry objections of lawmakers and environmentalists. The bids include a record $105 million offer from Shell for a single 9-square-mile tract. Environmental groups say... More »

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