The only living member of the family Odobenidae with flippers is the walrus.
Depending on where they live, there are three subspecies: the Atlantic walrus, the Pacific walrus, and the Arctic walrus. The Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic Oceans are home to one of the three subspecies.
Walruses have been a big part of the culture of the native people of the Arctic, who hunted them for food, tusks, and bones. In the 1800s, they were hunted and killed for their fat and meat.
At the start of the 20th century, hunters killed so many walruses that their numbers dropped significantly. Even so, it has gotten better since then.
Table of Contents
What the body looks like
A walrus has a body shape like a sea lion or seal. The most strange thing about it is the long tusk that both males and females have.
The tusk can grow to be 3.3 feet long and weigh 12 pounds. The male’s tusk is a little bit longer than the female’s. Walruses can use their tusks to fight and show who the boss is. The walrus looks like it has whiskers because it has a mat of stiff bristles around the tusk.
This mat is called vibrissae. A walrus has uneven fur all over its body, making it look bald. A male walrus has thick, wrinkled skin around his neck and shoulders.
Old walruses look almost pink, and they can even look white when they swim. The male has a baculum that can be as long as 25 inches.
The walrus eat mainly on the sea floor, and the shallow shell area is its favorite place to eat. The animals eat more than 60 marine animals, like scrubs, mollusks, shrimp, and tube worms, and they eat what they can find.
The walrus’s sensitive vibrissae help it find and identify prey, and then its firm lips seal around the prey to suck out the meat. Walruses also eat young seals.
They rarely eat seabirds or narwhals that are stuck in ice. People say the animals eat whale carcasses, but there isn’t much evidence to back this up.
Habitat And Range
Many Pacific walruses spend their summers in the Chukchi Sea and the Laptev Sea, north of the Bering Strait. Walruses gather in the spring along the coasts of Alaska and the Gulf of Anadyr.
They gather along the coasts of Siberia and the southern coast of Alaska during the winter. In the Canadian Arctic and the western part of Russia, there are fewer Atlantic walruses.
A small group of Laptev walruses also live mostly in the middle and western parts of the Laptev Sea. Because they can’t dive very well, the animals can only live in shallow water or on ice, where they can find food.
Also See: How Many Americans Suffer From Poverty?
Walruses are very social and live in big groups. They move in big groups, with the males and females carrying in different groups when they are not breeding.
The animals mark their territory with their tusks and bodies and show who is in charge by being aggressive.
Most of their time is spent on sea ice, looking for food and rest. During the summer, many walruses move to the north, and during the winter, they move to the south. The process of moving can be long and exciting.